Faroe Islands win their first European qualifier
for 16 years as they beat Estonia 2-0

Faroe Islands - Estonia 2-0 (1-0)
43' 1-0 Benjaminsen (pen)
47' 2-0 Arnbhjørn Hansen

The Faroe Islands rode their luck in the early stages when a clear Kaimar Saag shot wide when he should have put Estonia in front.

Estonia went close again just before the 20-minute mark when Einar Hansen saved off the line from Jarmo Ahjupera’s attempt.

A couple of minutes before the half-hour Jákup Mikkelsen in the Faroese goal was beaten by Sergei Zenjov’s long range effort, but was relieved to see the ball bounce off the upright.

The Faroe Islands hadn’t created real chances in the first half, although Arnbjørn Hansen was close with a header from an acute angle, but with 3 minutes remaining of the first half the Finnish referee spotted Puri holding Fróði Benjaminsen in connection with a corner and awarded a penalty. Benjaminsen certainly made the most of it as it looked like a very soft penalty. Nevertheless, Benjaminsen, the captain, safely converted from the spot to give the home-side the lead.

A minute later Christian Lamhauge Holst got clear of the Estonian defence, but his finish went across the face of goal.

The Faroe Islands were first on the pitch for the second half and that eagerness resulted in another penalty with two minutes from the restart. Cristian Lamhauge Holst seemed to have lost the ball at first, but won it back and played Arnbjørn Hansen who appeared to have been brought down, and the referee pointed to the spot for a second time. But the referee was certainly wrong again, as it looked like nothing but a dive.

But Benejaminsen was chosen as executer again, but his replica shot from the first time was this time saved by goalkeeper Sergei Pareiko, but Arnbjørn Hansen reacted quickly to turn the rebound in.

Ten minutes through the second half the frustration began to show for the Estonians when Puri kick the ball away after a free kick was awarded to the Faroe Islands. This produced a second yellow card for Puri who was then given marching orders.

The Faroes looked to have the match under control, but 20 minutes through the half the defence opened up to let Kaimar Saag through on goal, but clear with the goalkeeper, the Estonian forward finished well over goal. It should have been a goal.

Near the end of the match Faroese midfielder Pól Jóhannus Justinussen was dismissed for a second bookable offence.

Even with a two-goal cushion, the Faroese team will have felt anxious in the four minutes of added time, as they remember they were leading 1-0 in the reverse game in Estonia, but still lost by conceding twice in added time.

And Estonia nearly grabbed one this evening, but Jákup Mikkelsen made a fantastic flying save to deny Dmitri Kruglov's shot from long range to creep into the top corner.

The Faro Islands now have four points which is super, but it would have been super duper if they had seven which they so easily could have had, had they not conceded those two goals in added time in Estonia.

But it was a memorable night at Svangaskarð in Toftir tonight where an international match for the last time has been played on real grass as the surface will now be shifted to artificial grass. The first competitive match at Svangaskarð was a World Cup qualifier against Belgium in 1992. Belgium won 3-0.

Results and table

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