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UEFA World Cup qualifying wrap: Serbia, Bulgaria on song

12 September 2012 00:31

Serbia maintained their unbeaten record in World Cup qualifying after humiliating a dismal Wales outfit while Bulgaria moved level with Italy.

Sinisa Mihajlovic's side, who opened their qualifying campaign with a goalless draw in Scotland, romped past Wales 6-1 in Novi Sad.

Manchester City defender Aleksandr Kolarov got the ball rolling for the hosts on 15 minutes before Zoran Tosic doubled their advantage eight minutes later.

Gareth Bale pulled a goal back for Wales on the half-hour mark with a superbly taken free kick but Serbia restored their three goal advantage on 39 minutes through Filip Djuricic.

The hosts inflicted further pain on Chris Coleman's men with three goals in the second half from Dusan Tadic, Branislav Ivanovic and Miralem Sulejmani.

Croatia and Belgium are locked on four points alongside Serbia following their 1-1 draw in Brussels, while Scotland and Macedonia could not be separated in Tuesday's other Group A fixture.

A 43rd minute strike from midfielder Georgi Milanov was enough for Bulgaria to claim victory at home to Armenia.

The Bulgarians now join Italy on four points in Group B after the Euro 2012 finalists accounted for Malta 2-0.

In Group C, Sweden opened their qualifying campaign with a 2-0 win against minnows Kazakhstan, while goals from Marco Reus and Mesut Oezil guided Germany to a hard-fought 2-1 victory in Austria.

Romania and the Netherlands both preserved their 100 per cent records with comfortable wins on Tuesday.

The Romanians eased past Andorra 4-0, while Louis Van Gaal's Dutch side overcame Hungary 4-1 in Budapest despite an injury scare to Manchester United striker Robin Van Persie.

And in Group D's remaining fixture, Turkey bounced back from their opening day defeat with a 3-0 triumph at home to Estonia.

Switzerland remain the only unbeaten team in Group E after they made it two from two against Albania courtesy of goals from new Bayern Munich signing Xherdan Shaqiri and Italy-based midfielder Gokan Inler.

In other group results, Cyprus edged Iceland 1-0 and Norway overcame Slovenia.

Former England manager Fabio Capello guided Russia to a 4-0 victory against Israel, his second successive win as coach.

Portugal netted three second-half goals to beat Azerbaijan 3-0, while Northern Ireland were held to a 1-1 draw by Luxembourg in Group F.

Fresh after thrashing Liechtenstein 8-1, Bosnia-Herzegovina continued their red-hot form in front of goal with a 4-1 triumph at home to Latvia.

Fellow Group G opponents Greece also recorded a 2-0 win over Lithuania and Slovakia accounted for Liechtenstein by the same scoreline.

Two goals apiece from Fatos Beqiraj and Andrija Delibasic helped Montenegro to a 6-0 demolition of San Marino at the Stadio Olimpico di Serravalle.

Elsewhere in Group H, Frank Lampard's late penalty salvaged a point for hosts England in a 1-1 stalemate against Ukraine and Poland claimed maximum points with a 2-0 success at home to Moldova.

France continue to top Group I after battling past a spirited Belarus side 3-1 in Paris, while defending world champions Spain edged Georgia 1-0.

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