Kanatlarovski’s reign with Macedonia U21 started with a defeat against favorites in the group France.
photo by Ouest France / Dominique Breugnot: Arbi Vosha in duel with Eduardo Camavinga
Macedonia faced a difficult task in the opening qualifier for the U21 Euro 2023. Kanatlarovski’s team visited France, the absolute favorites to win the group, led by Real Madrid’s Camavinga. Kanatlarovski opted for a 4-3-3 formation with both Australian Macedonians Bozhinovski and Cholakovski in the starting line-up. The team was missing several important players, because of injury or COVID-19 positive tests.
It is fair to say France was in control of the match since the early minutes. Mbuku had a chance to open the scoreline in the 8th minute but his header went just wide of the goal. 10 minutes later Gouiri was just late for a cross from the right side and the result remained 0:0. In the 26th minute Mbuku scored the opening goal of the match. However, the goal shouldn’t have stood as the ball seemed it did not cross the line entirely.
France continued pressing looking for a second goal. Macedonia’s first and only shot on goal came before the end of the first half. Antovski tried from a long-range free kick but the ball did not trouble the opposing keeper.
In the second half, France continued in the same way and just 5 minutes in, they were up by 2. This time it was Camavinga who fired a shot from outside the box which Denkovski was unable to save.
Talking about Denkovski, it has to be said he had several saves and made sure the score was not higher in favor of the hosts.
Even after 2:0, France remained in Macedonia’s half and had several attempts to make the win even more convincing. Near the end, Macedonia took their first corner, but it resulted in a quick counter attack for France which ended in an excellent lob goal by Kalulu for setting the final score.
In the next match, Macedonia hosts Serbia in Ohrid on 7th of September.
Macedonia: Denkovski; Jankulov, Gjurkovski, Bozhinovski, Antovski (74′ Sheji); Grozdanovski (69′ Skenderi), Elezi, Fazlagikj (84′ Adem), Vosha (68′ Ferati), Cholakovski, Ilievski (46′ Maksimov)