Iceland, Italy, Spain win World Cup qualifiers as Wales falters
The small nation keeps surprising and Turkey was the latest victim at the
The first was an own-goal from center back
Iceland went out to host France in the
Croatia and Iceland each have seven points but Croatia leads Group I on goal differential after its 1–0 win in
Only the nine group winners in Europe qualify directly for the tournament in Russia. The best eight group runner-ups advance to a playoff.
Wales and its star forward
Perhaps unsurprisingly for the Welsh, it was Georgia dealing the blow.
The Georgians haven’t lost to Wales in four meetings now after they recovered from conceding a 10th-minute goal to Bale to draw 1–1 against the Euro 2016 semifinalists. The first three matches between the countries all ended as wins for Georgia.
Georgia attacked in waves in the second half and
Serbia leads the group on goal differential ahead of Ireland after a 3–2 win over Austria. Wales is two points back and Austria trails by three. Georgia picked up its first point, while
Aleksandar Mitrovic twice gave Serbia the lead only for
Italy kept Spain from opening a significant advantage atop the group by scoring two late goals and salvaging a 3–2 win at Macedonia.
Spain got off to a slow start at Albania but eased to a 2–0 victory behind second-half goals by
Italy needed an injury-time goal by
Albania stayed on six points along with Israel, which beat
Croatia stayed atop the group with a 1–0 win at Finland.
Fresh off a hat trick against Kosovo, the Croatia star scored the only goal of the game in Finland with a simple finish from point-blank range.
Meanwhile, it’s been a tough life on the road for new FIFA member Kosovo.
The loss to Ukraine in a game staged in Poland meant the Kosovans have conceded nine goals this week at neutral venues.
Fresh off a 6–0 "home" loss to Croatia which was actually played in Albania because Kosovo still doesn’t have a certified stadium, Kosovo had to face Ukraine in Poland because the