Category: Archive

Healy gives Worthington ideal start

February 17, 2011

By Staff Reporter

The North leapt into second place in Group F, one point ahead of Spain (5-0-2, 15), with their fifth win in the qualifiers. Sweden (6-1, 18) lead the group by two points.
Healy, his country’s all-time leading scorer, gave new boss Nigel Worthington a winning start after drawing first blood in the fifth minute.
The prolific Fulham striker headed in a Kyle Lafferty cross then thumped in a second goal from close range half an hour later to bring his international tally to 31 strikes in 57 appearances.
He fell one goal short of repeating another hat trick against the minnows, a side he tormented in the 4-1 mauling in Vaduz last March.
Lafferty (56th) was the other Irish marksman last week, while Mario Frick pulled one back for Liechtenstein in the dying minutes.
The match was the North’s penultimate home qualifier as they play four of their remaining five games on the road. Under Worthington’s predecessor Lawrie Sanchez, the North had turned Windsor Park into a fortress of sorts, defeating England, Spain and Sweden, among others.
Their remaining Euro ’08 qualifying schedule is: away to Latvia (Sept. 8), Iceland (Sept. 12), Sweden Oct. 17); at home to Denmark (Nov. 17) and away to Spain (Nov. 21).
Group F leaders Sweden warmed up for the final round of qualifiers by downing the United States 1-0 in Gothenburg. Kall Kallstron (56th) scored.
Spain, meanwhile, had a double from David Silva (66th, 90th) and one from Carlos Marchena (37th) in a 3-2 victory over reigning European champs Greece.
Theofanis Gekas (18th) and Kostas Katsouranis (43rd) connected for the Greeks.
In a result unlikely to have any bearing on the battle for second spot in Group D between The Republic of Ireland and the Czech Republic, Cyprus beat last place San Marino 1-0 in Serravalle.
Yiannis Okkas (53th) struck for the lowly Cypriots, whose only other win thus far was that 5-2 humiliation of Ireland last fall.
Ireland, 4-0 victors over Denmark in Aarhus, were not the only Group D side in impressive form last week. In London, first place Germany who visit Dublin on October 13, eclipsed England 2-1 at their refurbished Wembley Stadium.
Kevin Kuranyi (26th) and Christian Pander (40th) canceled out Frank Lampard’s opener (9th).
Giant striker Jan Koller (33rd) connected for the Czechs in a 1-1 tie with Austria in Vienna. Martin Harnik, who’s 20, scored for the Euro ’08 co-hosts (78th) on his debut.

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