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  • 21 November 2023

North Macedonia vs England: Can England Win Today?

Gareth Southgate’s men hardly played well as they beat Malta 2-0 match played at Wembley Stadium on Friday. They have made it for a tournament in Germany next year but they want to win something more. England requires only a single point in its last qualifying game and is thus placed in the top group (pot 1) for Euro 2024 draws. They have scored 19 points from a total of 7 games in group C.

North Macedonia out of qualification for Euro 2024. Currently, they lie in fourth position in group C after losing out badly to Italy by 5-2 on Friday. In the Euro 2024 qualifier, only Malta was defeated by Blagoja Milevski’s team in both home and away games. Nevertheless, they had difficulty with England, having been beaten 7-0 by them in the previous match that took place in June. At the end of the campaign, the home side will want to demonstrate progress in their performance.

Let’s take a look at today’s match highlights:

  • As expected by betting sites, England’s recent match did not follow suit. Despite the handicap market’s expectation of a five or six-goal margin for England against Malta at Wembley on Friday, it turned out to be a modest 2-0 final score.
  • In the beginning, it was only an own goal that separated the two sides for the first 74 minutes, Harry Kane being at hand with his trademark for Southgate’s side to score in the last minute.
  • The same scenario was experienced by North Macedonia when they were playing in Rome, with Italy leading 3-0 at halftime. In the second half, North Macedonia managed to score twice. Despite this, North Macedonia managed to capitalize as much as possible on their rare chances to score twice during their attack against Italy, as they eventually lost out by five goals to two.
  • Blagoja Milevski’s team has showcased their excellence at home in this qualification section as they managed a tie of 1 all against Italy and only lost 2 – 3 to Ukraine by a minute margin in the 83rd minute. North Macedonia beat Malta 2-1 before friendlies against Armenia (1-0) and Faroe Islands (3-1).
  • First-half begins!!
  • In the 3rd minute, Grealish delivers a cross with a deflection almost on Watkins on the first post. Nevertheless, Musliu’s final-minute tackle saves the day when he blocks it to the backline and corners.
  • In the 4th minute, there’s a chance: A low left-sided corner by Alexander-Arnold. However, the ball does not land on Rice as he attempts a header shot near the post, leaving it to bobble past his leg. Lewis Freshman kicks a loose ball with his feet on the left, and almost every time, it goes away from the target.
  • Alexander-Arnold provides a low and left-sided corner that gives a chance. Lucky for us, this time, it doesn’t find Rice at the near post but rolls along on the edge of the area.” The newcomer to the English team, Lewies, tries an effort with his left foot that passes beyond the goalpost.
  • Atanasov gives a powerful back challenge against Grealsish in the 6th minute, but the referee gives him a warning. Watkins and Rice are unhappy about the decision. The English side still has control, but this time, the winger of the Manchester City team, Grealish, receives a brutal tackle as he regains possession for England. Nevertheless, Rice commits an uncalled-for error, curling the ball over the touchline.
  • The hard off-the-ball tackle by Alimi puts Grealish down in the 11th minute. The midfielder from North Macedonia appeared deliberate as if he did it purposely, and the English wingers looked very upset by the act.
  • The team is moving towards the 14th minute, and there is an exciting moment when City makes a triangle at the left line consisting of Grealish, Foden, and Lewis. Grealish, forward, crosses a ball to the edge of the area, and Rice side-flicks through a crowd of people and into a low-right corner. Dimitrievski is lucky that although he does not see, the ball still hits the post on the side, away from risk.
  • North Macedonia temporarily starts worrying in the 16th minute when Watkins fails to connect following Foden’s craftiness. In return, the hosts are awarded a free kick towards their left flank, which they use to recuperate.
  • Elmas is shown the first yellow card in the 17th minute after the charge on Saka, who was running ahead. It is not only a warning on a tackle itself but also an excessive reaction of dissent towards a referee.
  • Maguire cannot resist Alexander’s invitation in the eighteenth minute. Nevertheless, the referee cards the center-back for playing an in-offensive ball inside the box. There are many reasons why I have never tried to convince my friend that he was mistaken about his prediction.
  • During the 23rd minute, Maguire, Guehi, and Rice enter the field following a corner of Foden. Unfortunately, the delivery on the left proves poor, and Alioski sweeps it away. Finally, an English long ball from the defense is launched by Pickford before conducting yet another assault on the opposing team.
  • In the 24th minute, there's a controversial moment in which Maguire loses possession inside his box while Elmas moves towards the left side of the area. The strikers from North Macedonia touch the ball, and Maguire falls on their side while he is touching the ball. Despite the protests by the home team, the softer choice still goes in favor of the visitors.
  • Musliu, in the 25th minute, makes some skillful moves, making Walker make a foul that should not be. He will, therefore, enable high ball into the penalty box to tall players who can then send them forward for attack from a left-sidely side corner kick.
  • In the 26th minute, Bardhi's free-kick was taken from the left wing while Atanasov competed for the ball at the back post. Nonetheless, other sails aim to take a goal kick as the home team fails to exploit another chance.
  • Slide almost in Watkins; in the 29th minute,  Foden fails. Rolling the ball, Dimitrievski mainly moves forward out of the goal mouth and takes the ball up. It was a close one for the visitors.
  • Atanasov also commits a second foul against Lewis in the 34th minute, but it is not sanctioned. Though this was the fourth penalty kick awarded against Atanasov, a double punishment was not given.
  • As we move to the 35th minute, England earns the third corner of the match and is crossed by Foden from the left wing. Saka is guilty of time-wasting when he commits an unnecessary foul to clear the near-post delivery.
  • A header in the 38th minute takes place between Lewis and Mioski inside the English area zone. Miovski puts his hands before him and falls to the ground with his face. The VAR calls a review of what happened for the VAR.
  • A penalty for North Macedonia in the 39th minute. After the VAR review, the referee discusses it with the touchline monitor and concludes that Lewis impeded Miovski by misdirecting his wayward arm in the aerial contest. A VAR review and a subsequent penalty decision also resulted in a caution for Lewis.
  • But in the 41st minute, Jordan Pickford's miraculous save of Enis Bardhi's penalty. Nonetheless, Bardhi jumps on the rebound and fires into an empty net in a thunderous first-time right-footed shot. Despite the odds against them, North Macedonia takes the lead with a hotly disputed penalty call.
  • In 45 minutes, Foden runs deeply into the North Macedonia defense and creates space for Lewis to take a low right-foot shot. He does an excellent job saving the ball as low as his left.
  • The game also continues in injury time (45’+3) as Saka feeds with an inside pass from the right-hand side before Alexander-Arnold shoots with a curving right-footed attempt towards the top bar. Dimitrievski saves himself well enough to tip the ball over the crossbar.
  • Maguire fell within the North Macedonia region at the death of the first half when searching for a penalty for a high kick. While VAR reviews the situation, it determines that Maguire did not boot the ball high enough. Dimitrievski gets away with a mere warning for his confrontation with Maguire.
  • North Macedonia is still ahead of England by 1 goal at the end of the first half.

Second-half begins!!!

  • A goal in the 47th minute. Foden assists Saka with an expert move at the right flank as he makes a curving ball delivery at the back post. Dimitrievski handles a little touch, but Grealish pokes the ball into the open goal. Nevertheless, VAR is looking at the goal.
  • The 49th minute has the Var decision of NO GOAL!! After a long time, VAR ruled that North Macedonia still had a one-goal advantage. The off-side decision rules out Grealish’s back post tap, with the Manchester City winger being adjudged as off-side before Saka’s cross from the right. The officials’ decision to frustrate England more.
  • In the 56th minute, The English displeasure with the referee is underlined by Alexander-Arnold receiving a caution for dissent as he argues against a throw-in decision.
  • In the 58th minute, Watkins plays for only a short while. Thus, he is replaced by Kane – England’s leading guy.
  • In the 59th minute, England levels the score! Atanasov tries to clear the ball with his foot, but it hits Atanasov, an own goal for him. It is one each for North Macedonia and Israel.
  • In the 66th minute, he swings one with a left foot, and it goes out for a corner kick on his side. Despite this, North Macedonia takes it in for a short corner, but Kane puts it out comfortably on the near post.
  • In the 70th minute, Atanasov tries to compensate his own goal with a long-range right-footed shot. Confidence boosts North Mashedia as they create a goal opportunity that Pickford easily saves.
  • In the 71st minute, following Lewis’ left-wing cross, Saka takes a right-footed shot from after a spin. It was an attempted goal, but the Macedonians’ defense bars an equalizer. However, they could have passed it to Foden.
  • In the 75th minute, Ristovski replaces Miovski, who wins the first-half penalty. A year-long injured Kostadinov replaces Alimi.
  • In the 82nd minute, Foden takes the ball for a comprehensive free kick, which he delivers to the back post. Heads downward for Maguire with comfortably saved for Dimitrievski. However, the referee detects an offense in the area and grants a free-kick to North Macedonia.
  • Phillips came in for Alexander-Arnold in the 84th minute. In another instance, Marcus Rashford came in for Grealish in the 70th minute. However, this allowed Palmer to come back into the international frontline.
  • Ashkovski replaced Dimoski in the 86th minute.
  • Then, in the 88th minute, the Balkan boys attempted a short free kick, after which Alioski sent a high-quality cross from the left wing. Serafimov rose high, but his spinning header ended up on the roof of the net, with Pickford being watching by.
  • At the end of the final minute, only a lucky kick by Muslu stopped Foden’s rare free-kick for England. This enabled North Macedonia to do a switch-off, where Elezi replaced Atanasov, who scored an own-goal equalizer.
  • Rashford shot a far-away free kick in the 90’+ 1′ minute, and it missed Dimitrievski’s post by a considerable margin.
  • In 90’ + 5’, Rashford’s left-wing cross bypassed the first man but did not lead to a late win as England should have scored.
  • Walker got a right-wing cross in the 90’+ 6′minute, but Kane’s header shot over the post. England’s player called for a corner, but it wasn’t given

At the full-time whistle in the 90′ +7’ minute, the game was completed with the final result as North Macedonia 1 – England 1.

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