Macedonia continued their good start in the U21 EURO qualifiers and won their second game as well, this time defeating Montenegro away thanks to two goals by captain Jani Atanasov.
photo by FFM: The Macedonian team singing the national anthem
Coach Blagoja Milevski remained on the same 4-2-3-1 formation and made only one change from the first qualifier against the Faroe Islands – left back Filip Antovski was benched for this match and instead of him, Akademija Pandev’s right back Vane Jovanov got to start.
Similar like in the first qualifier – the opponents were the first to take the lead after some weak play in the back line. Meris Skenderović scored after 10 minutes to give Montenegro 1:0 lead. However the Macedonian team picked up their game and they immediately responded with an equalizer only 4 minutes later. Captain Jani Atanasov converted a free kick and took a great shot that went past the Montenegrin goalkeeper. In the 33rd minute, Dimitar Mitrevski got fouled in the penalty area and Atanasov took the responsibility to convert the penalty, which he successfully turned into a second goal for him and the Macedonian team.
In the second half Montenegro pushed hard to equalize while Macedonia pulled back to defend. Things got additionally difficult in the end when Milosh Tosheski picked up two yellow cards within two minutes, which left the young red lynxes down to 10 men, but they managed to hold off and keep their 1:2 lead until the final whistle.
In 5 days, Macedonia will be facing their next opponent in the name of Kazakhstan, at the Petar Miloshevski stadium in Skopje.