Vassiljev's 20th goal wins it for Estonia

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9/4/2015 4:53 PM
Category: Sports

Estonia prevailed in the battle of the Baltics Euro 2016 qualifier against Lithuania with Konstantin Vassiljev's 20th goal for the national team, from 80 games, sealing the win.

Estonia began the day on seven, Lithuania on six points, with Slovenia in third place on nine points. Estonia needed the win to keep any hopes of achieving at least third place, and a play-off spot, in the group, which is currently topped by England and Switzerland.

The game was very open, characterized more by amateurish mistakes than a crunch qualifier with Lithuania especially making a number of simple technical mistakes. Estonia threatened but could not score while Lithuania played a more physical game, which Estonia had a hard time adopting to.

Ats Purje had a shot cleared off line, after the Lithuanian goalkeeper dropped the ball, before Vassiljev rounded off a Sergei Zenjov move to fire Estonia into the lead on the 72st minute. It was a very nervous last 20 minutes for Estonia, with the visitors pressing hard, sending many crosses into the box, but Estonia was not to be beaten.

Slovenia is up next for Estonia, an away game on Tuesday.

In the other games in the group, England collected a routine win against San Marino in a 6-0 win while Switzerland will host Slovenia later today. England will take on Switzerland, and Lithuania hosts San Marino on Tuesday.

On October 9 Estonia will face England in London, with England likely to have already won the group by then. Estonia's last game is at home against Switzerland on October 12. 

J.M. Laats

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