Sports

Morata, Sancet take Spain closer to Euro qualification, Turkey shock Croatia

Sports Desk, Oct 12 (EFE).- Álvaro Morata scored from a header in the 73rd minute and debutant Oihan Sancet added another four minutes from time to give Spain a 2-0 win over Scotland in their UEFA European Championship qualifiers in Seville on Thursday.

The win took Spain closer to qualification for the tournament in Germany next year and kept Group A leaders Scotland, undefeated until this game, still waiting.

Scotland entered the game knowing that a point would be enough for them to qualify, and they held Spain 0-0 in the first half.

With both teams pressing hard for a goal, Spain saw Mikel Merino’s shot hit the post in the first half.

Scotland had a free kick goal from Scott McTominay disallowed by the video assistant referee in the 59th minute as Jack Hendry was ruled offside.

Morata soon headed a home cross from substitute Jesús Navas to break the deadlock, and Sancet, coming in for Mikel Merino for his international debut, sealed the deal soon.

The goal helped Spain avenge their 0-2 defeat in Glasgow in March and earn their 25th straight Euro qualification victory at home.

Spain have not lost a Euro qualifier at home since a 1-0 defeat against Greece in June 2003.

In the other Group A matches, Erling Haaland struck twice between goals from Alexander Sorloth and Fredrik Aursnes as Norway beat Cyprus 4-0 at Larcana to keep their qualification hopes alive.

Scotland leads the group with 15 points from five matches, while Spain remains hot on their heels with 12 points.

Haaland brace took Norway’s tally to 10 points.

Meanwhile, Galatasaray forward Barış Alper Yılmaz struck the only goal in the 30th minute as Turkey stunned Croatia 1-0 in Osijek to move to the top of Group D in another crucial match of the night.

Yılmaz raced onto Salih Özcan’s through ball before he delightfully chipped the ball over advancing Dominik Livaković to score the winner to hand their Italian Vincenzo Montella a win in his first game in charge.

Turkey took their tally to 13 points from six matches with the win, while Croatia, who suffered their first ever home defeat in 11 Euro qualifiers, remained second with 10 points and a game in hand.

Elsewhere on the night, Albania beat Czechia 3-0 to open up a four-point advantage at the top of Group E, while Latvia picked up their first points with a 2-0 win over Armenia.

Twenty teams will qualify for the finals in Germany through the group stage, while another three will join the hosts through the play-offs. EFE

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