Euro 2016 qualifying: Bosnia and Belgium share spoils in 1-1 draw

Bosnia and Belgium drew 1-1 in an entertaining Euro 2016 Group B qualifier after midfielder Radja Nainggolan cancelled out Edin Dzeko’s first-half opener for the Balkan nation on Monday.

Reuters| Last Updated: Oct 14, 2014, 08:38 AM IST
Euro 2016 qualifying: Bosnia and Belgium share spoils in 1-1 draw

Zenica: Bosnia and Belgium drew 1-1 in an entertaining Euro 2016 Group B qualifier after midfielder Radja Nainggolan cancelled out Edin Dzeko’s first-half opener for the Balkan nation on Monday.

A clinical strike by Dzeko gave Bosnia the lead against the run of play before Nainggolan equalised thanks to a blunder by keeper Asmir Begovic, who had kept his team afloat in the first half. 

The result left the Belgians on four points from two games after their opening 6-0 home rout of Andorra while Bosnia have two points from three matches following a 2-1 home defeat by Cyprus and a 0-0 draw at Wales.

Begovic produced a string of superb saves either side of Dzeko’s 28th minute opener, when the Manchester City striker buried his shot past Thibaut Courtois after Miralem Pjanic squared a perfect cutback into his path.

But the Stoke City keeper committed a calamitous error shortly after the break, allowing a tame Nainggolan shot from 20 metres to trickle into the back of the net under his body.

The Bosnians then gained the upper hand and twice came close when Vincent Kompany cleared Pjanic’s shot off the line and Courtois kept out a Dzeko header with an acrobatic save.

Both teams threw men forward in search of a late winner but were unable to carve out more clear-cut chances on a bumpy pitch in a jam-packed Bilino Polje stadium.