Slovakia continued their impressive form in the last few months after earning yet another Euro 2016 qualification victory.
The 2-1 score against Macedonia helped the Slovakian’s stay in touch with Spain at the top of the table. Slovakia were never expected to be in amongst the leaders, as the season draws to a close. The win against Macedonia was the sixth successive in all competitions and one that places the team’s dark horses for the upcoming final in France. Manager Jan Kosak has been able to achieve this run with relatively the same group of players who have part of the previous managerial reign.
Former world champions Spain were expected to top the group quite comfortably. It was largely thought that Slovakia will be fighting along with the likes of Ukraine for the second or even the third spot. However, Martin Skrtel’s team find themselves with a three-point advantage over Spain going into the final round of fixtures. The national team has now won all of their qualifying matches. Spain have a slender advantage in terms of goal difference and this could likely to come into force when the two teams meet each other in September. This game will potentially determine the leader of the group.
"They weren't pushing so hard, we were just playing our game. In the second half we stopped playing a little bit but we managed," said midfielder Viktor Pecovsky after the victory.Saláta gave the lead for Slovakia after just eight minutes while Napoli midfielder MarekHamsik doubled their advantage just before half-time. Macedonia’s Hasaniwas sent off late in the match and thus prevented any comeback from the opposition. After a few wobbles at the start of the qualification campaign, Spain appear to have recovered well and will be a formidable opposition Slovakia’s hopes of topping the group.