11.10.2017Bayer 04

World Cup: Mehmedi and Retsos still in the race

World Cup exit for Charles Aránguiz and Chile, but Admir Mehmedi and Panos Retsos, with Switzerland and Greece, are still hoping to take part in next summer's global football tournament in Russia. Joel Pohjanpalo scored for Finland.

The last game in Group B was very much like a final. Hosts, and European champions, Portugal played Switzerland who were three points ahead but with a worse goal difference after winning all nine of their previous matches. However, Admir Mehmedi, who played the full 90 minutes, and his fellow countrymen ended up on the losing side for the first time in a 2-0 defeat. As runners-up, Switzerland now take part in the play-offs as do Greece. The team coached by Michael Skibbe registered a comfortable 4-0 win against bottom-of-the-table Gibraltar. Panos Retsos, who came on as a substitute against Cyprus, did not play this time. The draw for the play-offs will be held on 17 October.

It was a bad night for Chile who needed to get a result in the final South American World Cup qualifier against Brazil. That did not happen with La Roja losing 3-0 – and that meant the Copa América winners failed to book a place in Russia as they finished sixth in the group. Chile fielded Charles Aránguiz, although the midfielder had suffered a calf injury in the game at Schalke ten days ago. The Werkself pro was substituted three minutes after the restart with the score at 0-0. He watched the demise unfold from the bench.



Joel Pohjanpalo and Julian Baumgartlinger, with Finland and Austria respectively, when no longer in a position to qualify for the World Cup But the group matches ended on a high for the duo. 'Baumi' Captained Austria to a 1-0 victory in Moldova, 'Danger' Secured a point for the Scandinavians with his late leveller in the 2-2 draw with Turkey.“ That was his sixth goal in 27 internationals.

The Germany U21 team, including captain Jonathan Tah and left-back Benny Henrichs, suffered a defeat in a European Championship qualifier for the first time in seven years. The European champions took the lead through Cedric Teuchert (FC Nürnberg) but ended up losing 3-1 in Norway after a run of 17 games unbeaten.

The Germany U17 team at the World Cup in India had an even worse time of it. After winning the opener against Costa Rica 2-1, the second game for the Germany youngsters, with Bayer 04 central defender Jan Boller playing one half and goalkeeper Marian Prinz on the bench, was a disaster with a 4-0 defeat against Iran. The team under coach Christian Wück now have to perform in the third match against Guinea on Friday (13.30 CET).

Kai Havertz, Sam Schreck and Atakan Akkaynak all started for the Germany U19s in the first qualifying round for the European Championships in Poland with a 2-0 win against the hosts. None of the Bayer 04 rising stars found the back of the net this time. The previous two matches, a 5-1 victory against Belarus and a 7-1 win against Northern Ireland, saw Havertz score 5 goals with one apiece for Schreck and Akkaynak.


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