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1 - 1
FT

Nikola Milenkovic 86' -
OG: 86'


Scored: 20'
- Sergej Milinkovic-Savic 20'


World Cup Qualifier Report: Republic of Ireland 1 - 1 Serbia

Tue, Sep 07 2021

Shane Duffy of Republic of Ireland in action against Nikola Milenkovi? of Serbia prior to scoring an own goal, Ireland’s equaliser, during the FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifying group A match between Republic of Ireland and Serbia at the Aviva Stadium in Dubl Credit: Timmy Keane

Andrew Dempsey reports from the Aviva Stadium

A late Serbian own-goal saw Ireland once again clinch a late point in their World Cup Qualifying campaign at the Aviva Stadium.

Nikola Milenkovic’s late OG undone the visitors who were also thwarted by the heroics of Ireland keeper Gavin Bazunu throughout the contest.

That was after Sergej Milenkovic-Savic gave Serbia a first-half lead.

The result does little in terms of Ireland’s World Cup dreams, but it was a result that may prove telling in terms of the Stephen Kenny era.

No competitive win in 15, and winless against Luxembourg and Azerbaijan in a disastrous qualifying campaign, has seen questions go the way of Kenny and his stewardship of the side.

But when the going gets tough, it is often the case that Ireland rise to the challenge, and this was no different.

Following a dismal draw at home to Azerbaijan, Kenny opted to make changes, a few enforced, as Andrew Omobamidele came in to make his full senior debut for the Boys in Green.

With the changes in mind, Ireland were nearly caught cold early on, but Aleksandar Mitrovic could not make the most out of a misplaced touch from Shane Duffy.

Despite their slow start, the hosts grew into the game shorty after. Adam Idah began to get some joy out of his defensive opponents, while Jeff Hendrick burst forward on occasions.

Nemanja Gudelj however grew into the game just as Ireland were pushing forward, and he forced two good, yet unremarkable saves from Gavin Bazunu.

Hendrick then went close himself after 18 minutes, but he could only see his shot on goal bounce wide of goal.

As Bazunu impressed with some authoritative play, there was little he could have done about the Serbian opener.

Dusan Tadic’s superb delivery found the head of Milenkovic-Savic who beat Bazunu with a superb glancing header.

There was little that the ex-Shamrock Rovers keeper could have done to keep the ball out of the net once it hit the Serbian’s head.

As the half wore on, Ireland had to withstand a mini-Serbian storm. But neither Nikola Milenkovic nor Mitrovic were able to find the back of the net.

The latter, Mitrovic, was denied by a strong Bazunu hand as Ireland went in a goal down at the break.

Buoyed by a fervent home support, Kenny’s side went on the attack straight from the restart, with James McClean getting plenty of space down the flanks. He, however, could not find an Irish head to suitably trouble Predrag Rajkovic.

But that early spell could not stifle the Serbs who continued to pose a real threat to the Irish defence.

Bazunu was forced into two good saves from Mitrovic, with the latter being the most impressive of the two.

Mitrovic got on the end of a salivating Filip Kostic cross, but the ex-Hoop was on hand to tip the ball over the bar after saving with his feet moments earlier.

Milenkovic-Savic then went close himself after a lay-off with Mitrovic, but his effort on goal went over the bar after some intricate play.

McClean was then forced into a last-ditch tackle to deny Serbia clinch all three points, before Milenkovic-Savic then went close himself from a Dusan Tadic free-kick.

Bazunu then saved from Luka Jovic as Serbia broke from an Ireland corner. And befitting of the game he was having, he saved when it looked as if he was unable to do so.

But Ireland were not dead yet. The Boys in Green cranked up the pressure, and the noise, and they were duly rewarded for that in the 87th minute.

As Serbia tried to clear a Callum Robinson cross, Nikola Milenkovic had the misfortune of turning into his own net.

It may have got better for Ireland during a frenetic injury time, but Omobamidele’s long-range strike was tipped away from the top corner by Rajkovic.

Shane Duffy had the last chance, but he too could only head over the bar as the Boys in Green clinched another point from the jaws of defeat. And that will do for the time being.

 

Republic of Ireland: Gavin Bazunu; Andrew Omobamidele, John Egan, Shane Duffy; James McClean, Jeff Hendrick (Conor Hourihane 78), Matt Doherty, Joshua Cullen (Jayson Molumby 66); Jamie McGrath (Daryl Horgan 66), Adam Idah (James Collins 78), Alan Browne (Callum Robinson 58).

Subs not used: James Talbot, Caoimhin Kelleher, Liam Scales, Cyrus Christie, Ryan Manning, Harry Arter, Troy Parrott.

Booked: Adam Idah (31), Alan Browne (49), Jayson Molumby (89).

 

Serbia: Predrag Rajkovic; Strahinja Pavlovic, Nikola Milenkovic, Milos Veljkovic; Dusan Tadic (Nemanja Maksimovic 83), Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Filip Kostic (Darko Lazovic 87), Nemanja Gudelj, Filip Djuricic (Nemanja Radonjic 70); Aleksandar Mitrovic, Dusan Vlahovic (Luka Jovic 70).

Subs not used: Mile Svilar, Marko Dmitrovic, Filip Mladenovic, Stefan Mitrovic, Sasa Lukic, Mihailo Ristic, Uros Racic, Ivan Ilic.

Booked: Filip Djuricic (25), Nemanja Radonjic (85).


Referee: Jose Maria Sanchez (Spain).

Attendance: 25,000.

extratime.com Player of the Match: Gavin Bazunu (Republic of Ireland).


Ireland
DSept. 7, 2021
Ireland 1 - 1 Serbia
WOct. 9, 2021
Azerbaijan 0 - 3 Ireland
WOct. 12, 2021
Ireland 4 - 0 Qatar
DNov. 11, 2021
Ireland 0 - 0 Portugal
WNov. 14, 2021
Luxembourg 0 - 3 Ireland
Gavin Bazunu
Goalkeeper
Andrew Omobamidele
Defender
John Egan 5
Defender
Shane Duffy 4
Defender
James McClean 11
Midfielder
Jeff Hendrick 13
78'
78Subbed Off: Conor Hourihane 78'
Midfielder
Matt Doherty 7
Midfielder
Joshua Cullen 14
66'
66Subbed Off: Jayson Molumby 66'
Midfielder
Jamie McGrath
66'
66Subbed Off: Daryl Horgan 66'
Forward
Adam Idah 9
Booked: 31'
78'
78Subbed Off: James Collins 78'
Forward
Alan Browne
Booked: 49'
58'
58Subbed Off: Callum Robinson 58'
Forward

Substitutes
Liam Scales
Defender
Callum Robinson
58'
58Subbed On: Alan Browne 58'
Forward
Troy Parrott
Forward
Jayson Molumby 22
66'
66Subbed On: Joshua Cullen 66'
Booked: 89'
Midfield
Ryan Manning 17
Midfield
Caoimhin Kelleher 16
Goalkeeper
Conor Hourihane 14
78'
78Subbed On: Jeff Hendrick 78'
Midfield
Daryl Horgan 11
66'
66Subbed On: Jamie McGrath 66'
Midfield
James Collins
78'
78Subbed On: Adam Idah 78'
Forward
Cyrus Christie
Defender
Harry Arter 20
Midfield
James Talbot
Goalkeeper
Serbia
WSept. 4, 2021
Serbia 4 - 1 Luxembourg
DSept. 7, 2021
Ireland 1 - 1 Serbia
WOct. 9, 2021
Luxembourg 0 - 1 Serbia
WOct. 12, 2021
Serbia 3 - 1 Azerbaijan
WNov. 14, 2021
Portugal 1 - 2 Serbia
12 Predrag Rajkovic
Goalkeeper
2 Strahinja Pavlovic
Defender
4 Nikola Milenkovic
Defender
OG: 86'
Milos Veljkovic
Defender
10 Dusan Tadic
Midfielder 83'
83Subbed Off: Nemanja Maksimovic 83'
20 Sergej Milinkovic-Savic
Midfielder
Scored: 20'
17 Filip Kostic
Midfielder 87'
87Subbed Off: Darko Lazovic 87'
8 Nemanja Gudelj
Midfielder
21 Filip Djuricic
Midfielder
Booked: 25'
70'
70Subbed Off: Nemanja Radonjic 70'
9 Aleksandar Mitrovic
Forward
15 Dusan Vlahovic
Forward 70'
70Subbed Off: Luka Jovic 70'

Substitutes
Mile Svilar
Goalkeeper
Mihailo Ristic
Midfield
7 Nemanja Radonjic
Midfield 70'
70Subbed On: Filip Djuricic 70'
Booked: 85'
Uros Racic
Midfield
3 Filip Mladenovic
Defender
13 Stefan Mitrovic
Defender
6 Nemanja Maksimovic
Midfield 83'
83Subbed On: Dusan Tadic 83'
Sasa Lukic
Midfield
7 Darko Lazovic
Forward 87'
87Subbed On: Filip Kostic 87'
18 Luka Jovic
Forward 70'
70Subbed On: Dusan Vlahovic 70'
Ivan Ilic
Unknown
1 Marko Dmitrovic
Goalkeeper

MATCH INFO

Competition: FIFA 2022 World Cup Qualifying Group A

Date: 7:45 p.m. Sept. 7, 2021

Venue: Aviva Stadium

Referee: Unknown

Attendance: Unknown

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