The road to the 2014 World Cup kicked off today in Europe as UEFA qualfiers began with a full slate of matches. Here's a rundown of all the results.
Croatia 1-0 Macedonia
Everton's Nikica Jelavic headed home a goal in the 68th minute, just five minutes after entering the match, and that was all that Crotia needed as they defeated Macedonia 1-0 at home. Not a great result in terms of padding the goal differential, but three points are always good.
Despite a wealth of attacking options up front for Belgium, it was their defenders who led them to a 2-0 win over Wales. It probably should have not been as close considering Welsh defender James Collins was sent off in the 25th minute for a bad foul on Guillaume Gillet. It took awhile, but in the end Manchester City's Vincent Kompany and Jan Vertonghen from Spurs both scored for Belgium as this young and talented side got their qualifying campaign off to a strong start.
Malta 0-1 Armenia
A late goal from Artur Sarkisov allowed Armenia to escape Malta with a 1-0 won and the full three points. Former Real Salt Lake striker Yura Movsisyan started and played the full 90 minutes for Armenia.
Kazakhstan 1-2 Ireland
Kazakhstan went ahead in the 38th minute thanks to Kairat Nurdauletov and looked to be on their way to a major upset until a Robbie Keane penalty pulled Ireland even in the 89th minute. The Irish finish the comeback in stoppage time thanks to a Kevin Doyle goal. Despite telling fans a new promising era is coming, it's clear Giovanni Trapattoni still has a lot of work to do.
Estonia 0-2 Romania
Goals from Gabriel Torje in 55th minute and Ciprian Marica in the 75th paced Romania to a 2-0 win over Estonia. Good start to qualifying for the Romanians who look to be in a fairly wide open group.
Andorra 0-5 Hungary
Hungary did not mess around in their qualfication opener, hammering Andorra 5-0. Five different players: Roland Juhasz, Zoltan Gera 33, Adám Szalai, Tamas Priskin and Vladimir Koman scored for Hungary. Two of those goals came after Andorra's Marco Valez was sent of for his second yellow card in the 67th minute. Hungary will sit on top of the group for now on goal differential.
Albania 3-1 Cyprus
Albania scored a convincing 3-1 win over Cyprus thanks to goals from Albania Armando Sadiku, Edgar Cani and Erjon Bogdani. The lone Cypriot goal came in first half stoppage time from Vincent Laban.
The Swiss rolled to a relatively painless 2-0 win over Slovenia thanks to goals from Granit Xhaka (20') and Napoli's Gokhan Inler (51'). Switzerland played the final 15 minutes of the match a man down after Tranquillo Barnetta was sent of for his second yellow card offense.
Iceland 2-0 Norway
Kari Arnason scored early and Alfred Finnbogason scored late as Iceland cruised past Norway 2-0.
Russia 2-0 Northern Ireland
Fabio Capello and Russa got their qualification campaign off to a postive start with fairly painless 2-0 win over Northern Ireland in Moscow. Viktor Faitzulin scored in the 30th minute and Roman Shirokov scored on penalty in the 78th minute to seal the deal.
Azerbaijan 1-1 Isreal
Bebars Natcho put Isreal ahead in the 50th minute, but Azerbaijan's Ruslan Abbasov equalized in the 65th, giving each side a point in their quantification opener.
Liechtenstein 1-8 Bosnia-Herzegovina
Bosnia-Herzegovina will certainly be pleased with their 8-1 thrashing of Liechtenstein today. Zvjezdan Misimovic had a brace, while Vedad Ibisevic and Manchester City's Edin Dzeko both netted hat tricks to lead the romp. This should do wonders for Bosnia's goal differential.
Lithuania 1-1 Slovakia
Marius Zaliukas staked Lithuania to a 1-0 lead in the 18th minute, but Marek Sapara equalized right before halftime. The match finished 1-1, sending Slovakia away with a disappointing draw to opener their qualifying run. The match saw two red cards shown with Lithuania's Viktor Pecovsky being sent off in the 55th minute for a bad foul, while Slovakia's Tadas Labukas being sent off after picking up a second yellow card in the seventh minute of stoppage time.
Latvia 1-2 Greece
Latvia went ahead in the first half thanks to a penalty by Aleksandrs Cauna in thr 43rd minute. Greece recovered in the second with goals from Nikos Spyropoulos (57') and Theofanis Gekas (70) to get the 2-1 victory.
Montenegro 2-2 Poland
The two sides played to a hard fought 2-2 draw with goals for Montenegro from Nikola Drincic and Mirko Vucinic, while Jakub Blaszczykowski and Adrian Mierzejewski scored for Poland. Both teams had players sent off as well. Montenegro's Savo Pavicevic in the 69th minute for his second yellow card, while Poland's Ludovic Obraniak was shown a straight red in the 72nd minute for violent conduct.
Georgia 1-0 Belarus
Georgia began their qualifying campaign with a nice 1-0 victory over Belarus. Tornike Okriashvili's goal in the 51st minute was the difference.