Disappointing night for City duo as World Cup hopes end for Greece
- Credit: PA
Greece failed to keep their World Cup qualifications hopes alive as they were edged out by Spain in Athens last night, with Norwich City's Dimitris Giannoulis in the starting line-up.
It was a must-win game for the Greeks, with Giannoulis - earning his 18th cap - starting as a left wing-back and conceding the decisive penalty in amongst a scrum of bodies, clipping Inigo Martinez's knee as he tried to clear his lines.
Pablo Sarabia converted, just a few minutes after Greece had an excellent Georgios Masouras strike chalked off for offside. Canaries winger Christos Tzolis came on at the break and Giannoulis was replaced in the 67th minute of the 1-0 defeat.
Elsewhere, qualification hopes were already over for the Republic of Ireland but Stephen Kenny's side earned a 0-0 draw with Group A leaders in Dublin, with City striker Adam Idah playing the final 30 minutes to earn his 12th cap.
Andrew Omobamidele missed out with a sore Achilles tendon but the Irish were able to keep Cristiano Ronaldo off the score-sheet and leave the Portuguese still needing a win to ensure they finish above Serbia and qualify automatically.
Back in England, Max Aarons played the full match as the England Under-21s beat the Czech Republic in Burnley in European U21 Championship qualification.
Earning his 14th cap for the Young Lions, the Canaries right-back wasn't involved in the goals as Everton winger Anthony Gordon scored a brace and Arsenal prospect Folarin Balogun scored the third. A friendly in Georgia is up next on Tuesday.
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The international action continues today with Scotland in Moldova for a 5pm kick-off knowing that victory will seal a play-off spot, with Canaries midfielders Kenny McLean and Billy Gilmour hoping to feature.
City winger Przemyslaw Placheta is with Poland in Andorra (7.45pm) as they look to deal with one of the Group I minnows in the hope of sealing a play-off place and keeping the pressure on leaders England.
There are also a couple of Norwich youngsters in U21 Euro qualifying today, with left-back Sean Stewart in the Northern Ireland U21 squad for a home qualifier against Lithuania (2pm) and goalkeeper Archie Mair in the Scotland squad for a home qualifier against Kazakhstan (7.05pm).