Belarus caused a huge sensation on Friday evening as they defeated France 1-0 in Paris to get their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign off a brilliant start, leaving German coach Bernd Stange elated.
Though they spent much of the match with their backs against the wall, the Eastern European’s had the game’s one moment of inspiration when Aliaksandr Hleb’s fine late run created a chance for Syarhey Kislyak, who lashed into the top corner of the net from 12 yards.
“It is a wonderful start,” Stange declared, according to France Football. “I hope that we will continue with this momentum.
“It's amazing what we achieved tonight. The first ten minutes were difficult. Our team showed it had a face, a style of game. I think we deserved this victory. It is not stolen.”
While revelling in his own success, the former Iraq boss didn’t forget counterpart Laurent Blanc, whose debut as Bleus coach he so spectacularly ruined.
“I feel for Laurent Blanc,” he admitted. “It is very difficult to build a team in just a few weeks. It has been three years since I started work and only now that we get this kind of performance.”
Belarus will try to continue their positive momentum on Tuesday against Romania.