Republic of Ireland 1-1 Serbia: Hosts earn second straight home point

Republic of Ireland 1-1 Serbia: Nikola Milenkovic own goal cancels out Sergej Milinkovic-Savic’s header but hosts’ slim World Cup hopes fade further… as Stephen Kenny’s side extend run without a competitive victory to TWELVE games

  • Serbia went ahead when Sergej Milinkovic-Savic headed in Dusan Tadic’s corner
  • Gavin Bazunu made a number of fine saves to keep the score down for Ireland 
  • An unfortunate own goal from Nikola Milenkovic saw parity restored in Dublin
  • But they need a miracle to qualify for the World Cup after two straight draws 

A freakish own goal from central defender Nikola Milenkovic earned Ireland a 1-1 home draw with Serbia as the visitors missed a string of chances after Sergej Milinkovic-Savic fired them ahead in their Group A World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.

The result left Serbia second in the group on 11 points from five games, two behind leaders Portugal who leapfrogged them into pole position with a 3-0 win in Azerbaijan earlier in the day.

Ireland goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu produced a string of superb saves after Milinkovic-Savic headed in Dusan Tadic’s corner in the 20th minute, having denied Serbia’s top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic three times.

Ireland saw their slim World Cup hopes fade further despite a 1-1 draw at home to Serbia

Nikola Milenkovic’s unfortunate own goal saw the hosts come from behind at the Aviva Stadium

Serbia have been flying high in Group A and took the lead in the first half in Dublin

Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic headed home Dusan Tadic’s corner to give Serbia the lead

The 19-year-old keeper also kept out efforts from Dusan Vlahovic, Nemanja Radonjic and Filip Kostic.

However, Lazio midfielder Milinkovic-Savic then turned villain for the visitors in the 87th minute with a comical error.

He blasted a simple goal-mouth clearance into Milenkovic who could not get out of the way, giving Ireland only their second point in the qualifiers after Stephen Kenny’s side scraped a 1-1 home draw against Azerbaijan on Saturday.

Adam Idah had one of a few attempts on goal during the first half of their latest qualifier

But Gavin Bazunu in the Ireland goal also had to be on hand to save a number of efforts

Arguably his best came when he denied Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic from close range

Ireland fans showed their support for under fire boss Stephen Kenny and roared the team on

And they saw their reward when a clearance bounced off Milenkovic to restore parity

Kenny is still without a competitive victory in 12 attempts since replacing Mick McCarthy

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