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November 19, 2013
• Arena Naţională, Bucureşti
Referee: M. Mažić
• Attendance: 49793
V. Torosidis 55' (own goal)
Greece win Aggregate 4 - 2
K. Mitroglou 23'
That is it from me, Tom Webber, for this evening. Have a great night.
FULL TIME - Romania 1-1 Greece (Agg 2-4): Mitroglou's first half strike may have been cancelled out by a Torosidis own goal, but the hosts' inability to work the opposing keeper proved to be their undoing on the night. It is Greece that will take part in the World Cup.
90' + 4'
A ball for Grozav at the back post is headed away by Vyntra and Romania fail to make anything of the corner with the final act of the game. GREECE ARE GOING TO BRAZIL!
90' + 4'
Greece have the ball down in the corner of the opposite end of the pitch and will hope to see the remainder of the game out down there.
90' + 2'
A wayward ball from deep bounces straight through to Karnezis and the home fans all let out a whistle.
90' + 1'
We are into the first of an additional four minutes. Not long for Greece to hold on now.
Yellow CardAlexandros Tziolis
Tziolis goes to ground after a late challenge form Grozav and he stays down on the deck for as long as possible. He eventually earns a booking for wasting too much time.
Greece seem incapable of holding onto the ball now, and they are just handing it back to Romania almost immediately after winning it. Maxim looks to beat Holebas on the far side but the left-back makes a good challenge and even earns a goal kick for his team.
Victor Piturca makes his final change, replacing the ineffectual Stancu with Grozav. Can he help inspire a dramatic late comeback?
Woeful from Niculae! The forward receives the ball on his right foot on the near side of the box. He shapes to bend an effort back across goal and into the top corner, but instead he rolls a tame effort into the hands of Karnezis.
Vyntra almost joins Torosidis in the bizarre own goals club as his skyward effort has Karnezis backpedalling. The keeper breathes a sigh of relief, though, as the ball drops on the roof of the net.
Maxim has been much livelier this half and is causing Greece problems with his technically-brilliant dribbling. However, as of yet he has been unable to create a meaningful chance for his team.
The crowd have become a lot quieter in the last 10 minutes. Do they already think that their side have left it too late?
Samaris gives away a free kick around 35 yards from goal and Maxim curles an enticing ball into the area. Samaras is alive to the danger, though, and nods it behind with Goian lurking.
Matel throws a stepover and attempts to curl an effort on goal from the corner of the area. Holebas blocks it but a late challenge from Samaras draws the attentions of the players. The referee is unmoved, though, and allows play to continue.
Greece aren't even attempting to counterattack now. When they get the ball they just want to hold onto it for as long as possible without having to commit too many men forward. You can hardly blame them for it too.
Romania have just 20 minutes to find a further two goals in order to take the match to extra time. In truth, they've hardly looked like scoring of their own accord all night. Marica has been woeful.
Salpingidis and Samaras need to really put the effort in and help out the three-man midfield that Greece are playing with tonight. Otherwise Romania will monopolise possession for the remainder of the night.
Latovlevici is the man to take it but he fires the free kick harmlessly over the top of the goal. They really ought to have done better there.
Tziovas brings down Tanase just outside the D and Romania have a cracking chance to add to their tally from this free kick...
GOOD SAVE!! Hoban picks up the ball 25 yards from goal and ducks inside a challenge before hammering a low shot to the near post. Karnezis quickly drops to his right and gets two hands to the ball to turn it behind.
Greece just cannot get the ball out of their own half, even though they have everyone other than Mitroglou back behind the ball. With just under 30 minutes left to play this tie is by no means over.
Romania are really fired up following that goal! The crowd are contributing to an extremely lively atmosphere that will surely only serve to feed their side in their hunt for goals.
Yellow CardJose Holebas
So, Romania now just need two goals in order to take this tie to extra time. A goal for the visitors though, would leave Romania needing another four!
Marius Constantin Niculae
Own GoalVasilis Torosidis
UNBELIEVABLE!! It's a crazy own goal! Hoban rolls the ball to the top of the box and Maxim cleverly dummies it. Holebas and Torosidis come at the ball from opposite directions and somehow contrive to send a looping effort past the keeper and into their own net.
Samaras has been superb tonight. He has not stopped running for his team and this is evidenced here, as he chases back to the edge of his own box to make a timely challenge on Torje.
Just as in the first half, Romania are dominating possession. It will be interesting to see whether this time around they are able to test Karnezis.
Tanase has barely had an impact on the game so far, and he really ought to be the creaive hub of this Romania side. He tries to pick out Torje on the right but his pass is shepherded out of play by Holebas.
We are back underway!
The teams are making their way back out onto the pitch so the second half will begin shortly.
HALF TIME - Romania 0-1 Greece (Agg 1-4): The hosts had plenty of possession early on but were unable to fashion a meaningful chance to shoot. The visitors, meanwhile, have made the most of their opportunities and hold the advantage going into the break.
A missile has been thrown onto the pitch, injuring a Greek player inside the penalty area and the referee has called for half time. Will keep you informed on that one.
45' + 1'
Marica finally gets a shot on goal but he blazes it well over the top. That was never going on target but he is adamant that there should have been a corner.
Ouch! Tanase is down after taking Siovas' clearance to the face. He eventually gets up, but we only have one minute of added time to play this half.
Karagounis clips it into the box and Samaras forces a save from Tatarusanu but the forward is adjudged as offside.
That is a rash challenge from Chiriches, and it gifts Greece another chance to go for goal with a free kick.
The referee goes over to the dugout to have a word with Fernando Santos. The Greece coach surely can't have too much to complain about after this first half though!
Salpingidis puts a cross into the box for the only man in there: Samaras. He overhits it but fortunately it runs through to Maniatis, however he fires his effort straight down the middle.
Maxim gives the ball away cheaply in midfield and Greece quickly seize possession. They are playing a very patient game at the moment, in no rush to push on and attack.
Victor Piturca does not look a happy man on the sidelines. He will surely be disappointed at his side's inability to create chances this half. Marica has not received a lot of service but for much of the game Greece have had 11 men behind the ball.
That is a waste from Torosidis. The right-back showed great drive to push on down the right but his cross into the box goes straight into the hands of the keeper. In fairness he didn't have much to aim at!
OVER THE TOP!! Latovlevici, who was brought on for Rat moments ago, fires a wild effort well over the top of the goal. He turns and jogs away, knowing that it was never going to be going in.
Matel gets a bit carried away and lunges into a tackle with Holebas. He is fortunate that the Greek rides the challenge so the impact is reduced, but the referee awards a free kick nonetheless.
Romania play a long ball up towards the forwards but again Sokratis is first to it, towering above his opponent to head away the danger. The BVB man has been solid so far.
Rat makes way early on having seemingly picked up a knock in the first half. Sam Allardyce will not be happy!
Well, you have to admit that that goal came somewhat against the run of play. Romania had been controlling possession but their continual slopiness at the back has seen them undone.
Yellow CardKonstantinos Mitroglou
GOOOOAAALL!! Mitroglou puts the visitors ahead! Karagounis supplied yet another fantastic pass and the striker made the most of Matel hanging back to get in behind. He had plenty of time and he used it wisely, sliding a cool finish into the bottom corner.
SO CLOSE!! Karagounis swats off a laser being pointed in his face and clips a great free kick into the area which Samaras glances just wide.
Straight down the middle! Stancu brings the ball under control 30 yards from goal and thumps a shot at Karnezis' goal. He fails to put it either side of the keeper, though, and he makes a comfortable save.
TOP SAVE! Romania are again too hesitant in possession in a dangerous area and Holebas manages to fire a shot across the face of goal. It is heading just inside the far post but Tatarusanu gets a hand to the ball and diverts it behind for a corner.
So far the central defensive pair of Sokratis and Siovas have repelled everything that Romania have sent into the area in the air. They will need to remain alert and aware to all movement for the whole of this game. Concentration is of the utmost importance.
Romania win a free kick on the near side and Maxim is the man to whip it into the box. His delivery is good but it is always in front of the attackers and the keeper is able to collect the ball under minimal pressure.
Chiriches nearly gets embarrassed! The centre-back was far too hesitant in possession on the edge of his own box and Karagounis nearly managed to pick his pocket.
A stray pass in midfield from Romania is pounced upon by Samaras, however the Greek is quickly brought to ground by Torje. Still, a moment of relief for the visiting defence will be appreciated.
Greece are incapable of getting a hold of the possession at the moment, with Romania retaining the ball with the utmost composure. If they are setting out to try and maintain their first-leg lead then they could be in for a very long night.
JUST WIDE!! Torje has looked lively in these early stages and here he drifts in from the left before loosing a powerful effort at goal. He slices across the ball but it causes it to constantly bend away from goal and he fails to work the keeper.
Some patient passes from Romania culminate with Rat cutting onto his weaker right foot and spraying a cross into the area. Marica is the target but it is a blue shirt that connects with the cross to bring an end to the attack.
An impressive start from the hosts and they earn a corner on the far side. Goian is beaten to the ball in the air but it is only cleared as far as Rat. He heads it back into the danger area but the referee's assistant raises his flag for offside.
We are underway in Romania!
ROMANIA: Tatarusanu; Matel, Goian, Rat, Chriches; Maxim, Tanase, Torje, Hoban; Stancu, Marica // GREECE: Karnezis; Papastathopoulos, Siovas, Torosidis, Holebas; Maniatis, Tziolis, Karagounis; Salpingidis, Samaras, Mitroglou
Tonight's hosts have won five of their last seven games at home and have kept three clean sheets in the last five on home soil. Kick off is just fifteen minutes away, at 7pm GMT.
Greece ran rings round Victor Piţurca's side for much of the first leg, but while they ended the game with ten men, Bogdan Stancu's 19th-minute strike has left them with a foothold in the tie – albeit a fairly fragile one – as the sides reconvene in Bucharest. The dream of a first World Cup in 16 years is alive, though it will take a prodigious effort for Romania to make it come true.
Hello and welcome to LIVE coverage of this evening's World Cup Qualifying Play-off second leg between Romania and Greece in Bucharest. The visitors hold a commanding 3-1 lead from Friday's encounter in Athens and will be confident of seeing the job through tonight to book a place at next summer's finals in Brazil.
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