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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Milosevic Scores Only Goal as Yugoslavia Wins




LIEGE, Belgium -- Savo Milosevic's third goal in the tournament gave Yugoslavia a 1-0 victory over Norway on Sunday, backheeling the Balkan nation back into contention for a Euro 2000 quarterfinal spot and throwing Group C wide open.


Milosevic of Spain's Zaragoza scored in the seventh minute, standing with his back to goal and deflecting a low freekick from Ljubinko Drulovic into the corner of the net.


"It was a fantastic victory, my players died on the pitch, they fought all the way," said Yugoslavia coach Vujadin Boskov.


After the second round of matches, Yugoslavia tops the group with four points, one more than Spain and Norway. Newcomer Slovenia, which lost to Spain 2-1 earlier in the day, is left with one point and only an outside chance of advancing.


Chances were abundant from the start, with the resurgent Yugoslavia, whose performances against Slovenia and Norway were as different as night and day, having the upper hand from the opening moments.


As early as the second minute, Drulovic twisted his way through the Norwegian defense, but his pass into the open space in front of goalie Thomas Myhre didn't find anyone.


Then came another Norwegian blunder when the defense failed to cover Milosevic, allowing him to score.


The Norwegians almost hit back at the other end five minutes later, but Yugoslavia goalie Ivica Kralj made a stunning save after Chelsea striker Tore Andre Flo sent a clever lob over him from 10 meters.


Norway normally thrives in a high-paced physical game, but in the humid, hot conditions the team looked lame for long stretches, allowing the individual skills of the Yugoslav stars to take charge.


"We couldn't get into the game, they outplayed us tactically," said Norwegian defender Vegard Heggem.


Yugoslavia could not believe its luck. Even veteran playmaker Dragan Stojkovic, 35, who plies his trade with Grampus Eight in Japan, outran many Norwegians at times.


In the 26th minute, Predrag Mijatovic showed his class, taking a pass with his back to goal, turning early and unleashing a beautiful left-foot shot from some 20 meters that required a stunning save from Myhre.


In an increasingly open game, the Yugoslav defense started losing its grip on Flo and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Flo worked himself free and hit a curler from 20 meters, but Ivica Kralj was equal to the task.


Immediately after halftime, Yugoslavia went looking for the goal to make victory certain. Vladimir Jugovic of Inter Milan came close with a shot that was well saved, and Mijatovic almost added a second in the 50th minute. At this stage, it was Myhre who kept Norway in touch.


Norway could have equalized again when Flo, noticing that Kralj was way out from his goal, broke away through the middle, but Djukic deflected the ball away from his foot in the last moment.


Gradually, however, the game degenerated into an ill-tempered affair with crunching tackles and clashes of the head. Yellow cards came flying, with six bookings in total.


Norway finally started relying on its superior physical conditioning to launch a final onslaught. But the Norwegian coach complained about the Yugoslavs' style of play, accusing them of wasting time.


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Group A


Team P W D L F A Pts


Portugal 2 2 0 0 4 2 6


England 2 1 0 1 3 3 3


Germany 2 0 1 1 1 2 1


Romania 2 0 1 1 1 2 1


England 1, Germany 0


Portugal 1, Romania 0


Tuesday's games


England vs. Romania 10:45 p.m.


Portugal vs. Germany 10:45 p.m.


Group B


Team P W D L F A Pts


Italy 2 2 0 0 4 1 6


Belgium 2 1 0 1 2 3 3


Sweden 2 0 1 1 1 2 1


Turkey 2 0 1 1 1 2 1


Group C


Team P W D L F A Pts


Yugoslavia 2 1 1 0 4 3 4


Norway 2 1 0 1 1 1 3


Spain 2 1 0 1 2 2 3


Slovenia 2 0 1 1 4 5 1


Yugoslavia 1, Norway 0


Spain 2, Slovenia 1


Group D


Team P W D L F A Pts


France 2 2 0 0 5 1 6


Netherlands 2 2 0 0 4 0 6


Czech Rep. 2 0 0 2 1 3 0


Denmark 2 0 0 2 0 6 0


France 2, Czech Republic 1


Netherlands 3, Denmark 0