Tuesday, 24 October, 2017

Iceland becomes smallest nation to qualify for FIFA World Cup

Pavlyuchenko Russia 2018 will be best World Cup Pavlyuchenko Russia 2018 will be best World Cup
Spencer Simpson | 11 October, 2017, 00:21

The country of just 334,252 people as of the 2016 census-put another way, an entire nation with a smaller population than that of Wichita, Kansas-is now the least populous to have ever qualified for the World Cup.

Sigurdsson, who scored the first goal for the team, in their last Group match against Kosovo, is Iceland's biggest star who signed for Everton with a reported transfer fee of 40 million pounds. Iceland reached the quarterfinal after upsetting England in the round of 16. The team earned ticket to the World Cup with 22 points.

That, after all, was arguably Iceland's most significant achievement in their triumphant and historic FIFA World Cup™ qualifying campaign.

Former West Ham chairman Eggert Magnusson says Iceland's World Cup qualification eclipses their epic journey to Euro 2016 and insists none of the elite teams will want to be paired with them next summer.

Gylfi Sigurdsson put the hosts ahead in in the first half and Johann Gudmundsson made it 2-0 in the second.

A goal in the 74th minute by substitute Aleksandr Prijovic led Serbia to a 1-0 triumph over visiting Georgia, boosting their point total to 21, two more than Ireland, who nailed down second place with a 1-0 away win against a Wales squad missing the injured Gareth Bale.

Serbia held on comfortably in the closing stages, knowing that they were safely through as Ireland won 1-0 at Wales to seal second place in group D and book a play-off berth.

Their national team finally qualified for their first ever major global tournament at Euro 2016 and won hearts and minds along the way. Iceland beat Kosovo 2-0 and Liverpool's Mohamed Salah took Eygpt to an emphatic 2-1 win over Congo. The hardest thing was to get going again after our massive party in France, but we decided that we were just going to finish this.

There were also 1-0 wins for Spain over Israel (Asier Illarramendi, 76th) and Italy over Albania (Antonio Candreva, 73rd).

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