In a game with many chances on both sides, Macedonia and Armenia played an interesting match with a triller ending that gave both teams 1 point each.
Macedonia dominated the first half and many chances to score with Ivan Trickovski having the first real one but Armenian keeper Roman Berezovsky saved his effort. Mario Gjurovski, Goran Pandev, Goran Popov, Aleksandar Todorovski, they all tried and failed to score, but closest was Stevica Ristić especially with his header in the 25th minute when he hit the post. Same happened to Armenia with Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Yura Movsisyan and Edgar Malakyan having good chances but no goal. In the 41st minute came the opening goal of the game. The popular Highlanders scored as Yura Movsisyan used the bad defending by the Macedonians. 0:1 for the visitors. But, only one minute of joy had the Armenians at the National Arena Philip II of Macedon. In the 42nd minute, Pandev assisted to Gjurovski who scored with a 17-meters long shot and tied the score on 1:1.
The second half was much different than the first. Armenia had more chances although Macedonia was dominating the game. The spectators at the stadium got very nervous around the 80th minute and even started cheering for Armenian on several occasions. The Macedonian team looked lost at the pitch, the players themselfs probably still couldn’t believe that they missed all those chances in the first half. Three minutes from time Movsisyan had the win in his legs, but failed to score his second althoug the was alone against Edin Nuredinoski, his shot went just wide. But, three minutes later former Ajax youth star Edgar Manucharyan stunned the crowd with his goal from counter attack, bringin the 2:1 lead to the Highlanders.
Armenia deserved to win although Macedonian didn’t deserve to lose. But, in the 5th minute of the injury time, Ararat Arakelyan stupidly played with hand in the box and made an unnessesery penalty for Macedonia, which Ilco Naumoski converted into a goal for a final 2:2.
Macedonia maybe lost 2 planned points, but at least played well in the attack although the perfect finishing was missing. Still the awful and dissapointing defence is worring. Always great at the back Nikolce Noveski, played maybe his worst ever game in the national team, with Igor Mitreski looking bad as well.
To view the match report click here.
Now Macedonia has only 1 point after 2 games, same as Armenia. Slovakia managed to surpriseRussia winning the three points in Moscow ans together with Ireland tops the table with max points. Macedonian’s next game is against Andorra away in October.