Luxembourg 0-3 Albania
Albania successfully completed the double over bottom-placed Luxembourg with a 3-0 victory at the Josy Barthel stadium, moving to the fourth position of Qualifying Group G.
Having registered their first win in the qualifying campaign on Saturday, also against Luxembourg, Otto Baric's side played with a renewed vigor and were helped very much by the fact that Luxembourg rarely threatened to score. In fact one of the major worries for Luxembourg coach Guy Hellers has been the inability of his side to score goals. The team has scored just once in the campaign, losing all the seven matches in the process.
However there were no such worries for Albania as it very nearly took the lead as early as in the fourth minute. Erjon Bogdani's shot from the edge of the penalty area was parried away by keeper Jonathan Joubert. But the rebound went straight to Edmond Kapllani and once again Joubert parried it straight to Alban Bushi whose shot took a deflection for a corner.
The fracas in front of the goal heralded a long period of dominance by Albania and Joubert had no time to lower his guard as his goal was bombarded with shots from the Albanian players. Albania finally took the lead through Ervin Skela in the 25th minute when the midfielder took possession of the ball on the edge of the area and hit a well placed shot that flew into the bottom-left corner of the net.
Luxembourg tried to launch a counter-attack through Daniel Collette, but his effort was very easily saved by Arjan Beqaj. However the match was all but over by the 36th minute when Bushi hit a curling cross from the left wing and Kapllani rose high to head the ball into the net.
Luxembourg made a change at the start of the second half, bringing on Claudio Lombardelli in place of Jerome Bigard. Though the home side managed to hit the target a couple of times, Beqaj was able to save them with ease and Luxembourg never looked like scoring in the game.
Kapllani completed the proceedings 18 minutes from time when he latched on to a left wing cross by substitute Besart Berisha before firing home his second, and Albania’s third, goal.
The win leaves Albania in a respectable fourth position in the table, with 9 points from 7 games. With the possibility of Albania qualifying for the Euro 2008 championship looking a distant dream, coach Otto Baric will want his team to play at its maximum potential for the remainder of the campaign. Luxembourg v Albania finished with a comfortable away win for the Albanian team at 3 goals to nil.
Tags: Albania, Luxembourg, Euro 2008 championship, Luxembourg v Albania