After the Faroe Islands had settled their nerves after some anxious five minutes, the rest of the first half was a quite even one. Although Slovenia had slightly more possession, the Faroes had as many scoring opportunities.
The Slovenian opportunities were mostly after high crosses and after 10 minutes Bostjan Cesar’s header went narrowly wide of the far post.
At the other end 10 minutes later a terrific Faroese attack, with many passes where they used the whole width of the pitch, ended with a cross from Hjalgrím Elttør on the right to Christian Lamhauge Holst in front of goal who had a free header, but goalkeeper Samir Handanovic saved comfortably.
On 23 minutes Lamhaguge Holst was played through and was clean in on goal, but just before he entered the penalty area, he was brought down by Marko Šuler who was given a red card.The foul had been committed 10 centimetres outside the penalty area which produced a free kick. Daniel Udsen’s effort went a couple of metres over the goal. Unfortunately Súni Olsen was on the bench today. He was the one who scored from a similar position against Lithuania in 2009.
Although playing with a man in advantage, it seemed to have the opposite effect for the Faroe Islands who looked unconcentrated for a time, while it seemed to spur on the visitors.
And four minutes later, Slovenia had taken the lead! The Faroes failed to clear a free kick into the penalty area and the ball fell to a clear Tim Matavž who fired the ball into the back of the net without any chance for Jákup Mikkelsen in the Faroese goal to save it.
Before that, Mikkelsen had not had to make a real save. This time it was impossible.The Faroes went close towards the end of the first half, but Lamhaughe Holst’s final delivery to a clear Hjalgrím Elttør in the penalty area lack precision.
The minute hand had just made one round in the second half when Slovenia increased their lead when defender Rógvi Baldvinsson – making his debut for the Faroe Islands today – headed a corner past his own goalkeeper. Desperately unlucky for the 21-year old who apart from that played a fine match in defence.
With the two-goal cushion on a away soil on a vet pitch that was very difficult to play on, Slovenia was happy to sit back for the rest of the match and watch the Faroese team have most of the possession.
But but although that possession, the Faroese team found it difficult to create clear-cut scoring opportunities.
Pól Jóhannus Justinusen had a go from the edge of the penalty area, but the goalkeeper saved comfortably and midway through the half, Einar Hansen’s freekick forced the Slovenian goalkeeper to give a rebound, but Elttørs shot was deflected by a defender and went out for a corner.
A while later Atli Danielsen tried from long distance, but although the goalkeeper dived to make the save, there were no real worries for him.
The 90 minutes quickly ebbed out and there was to be no repeat of the year 2000 result against Slovenia when the Faroe Islands scored twice at the death to grab a 2-2 draw.
On Tuesday, the Faroe Islands take on Estonia who arrive with a 3-0 defeat against Italy in their bag. In the reverse Estonia won 2-1, after scoring twice in added time!