UEFA to decide on abandoned Denmark-Sweden game

Despite wasting a three-goal lead to Denmark, Sweden still might win the game 3-0.

updated: June 05, 2007 18:25 IST
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Despite wasting a three-goal lead to Denmark, Sweden still might win the game 3-0.

UEFA officials must now decide the outcome of the European qualifier in Copenhagen between the Scandinavian neighbors, which was abandoned in the 89th minute at 3-3 on Saturday when an furious Danish fan ran on the field to try to get to German referee Herbert Fandel.

The unidentified fan, apparently angry that Fandel had ejected Danish defender Christian Poulsen and awarded Sweden a penalty, entered the field and was able to get a hand to Fandel's neck before being restrained by Danish players.

While the irate fan was led away, the German official walked off the field and abandoned the Group F game.

Danish officials initially said Sweden had been awarded a 3-0 forfeit victory. UEFA officials, however, said they needed to see the written reports of Fandel and his team of officials before making a ruling.

"No decision has been taken," UEFA spokesman Fritz Ahlstrom said after the match at Copenhagen's Parken stadium.

Danish players fear the worst, however.

"It is a sad ending," striker Jon Dahl Tomasson said. "I can understand that the referee called off the game. This is going to cost us."

Sweden led 3-0 by the 26th minute on two goals by Johan Elmander and another from Peter Hansson. But goals from Daniel Agger, Tomasson and substitute Leon Andreasen rallied Denmark and put it in position to salvage a point in their chase of Northern Ireland, Sweden and Spain for the two spots in the group.

Spain win 2-0

Northern Ireland was idle but Spain strengthened its chances by winning 2-0 at Latvia. If UEFA awards the victory to Sweden, it would climb atop the group by two points ahead of Northern Ireland and Spain, with Denmark in fourth eight points behind.

The latest round of 21 qualifying games was a good one for the powerhouse teams but put more pressure on England.

Three-time European champion Germany crushed San Marino 6-0 to open up a two-point advantage in Group D over the Czech Republic, which was held 0-0 by Wales.

France, Italy win

France beat Ukraine 2-0 and World Cup champion Italy edged the Faeroe Islands 2-1 to take control of the top two spots in Group B. Defending champion Greece went top of Group C by winning at Hungary, replacing Turkey which twice tossed away the lead and conceded a last-minute goal to lose 3-2 at Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Portugal's revival continued with a 2-1 victory at Belgium but Luiz Felipe Scolari's team remains five points behind Group A leader Poland which won 3-1 at Azerbaijan.

England is also five points off the lead in Group E and is back in fourth place.

Steve McClaren's team, which recalled David Beckham in a 1-1 friendly with Brazil on Friday, didn't have a qualifying game and the England coach was in Estonia to see Croatia win 1-0 to stay atop the group.

Israel won 2-1 at Macedonia and Russia outplayed Andorra 4-0 helped by three goals by Alexandr Kerzhakov. The results leave Croatia with 16 points, two ahead of Israel and Russia and England with 11. McClaren's team, with Beckham expected to start, hopes to capture three points by winning at Estonia on Wednesday, a day of 19 qualifiers.