Sweden hopes suffer another blow with Austria defeat

VIENNA Sat Jun 8, 2013 3:09am IST

Austria's Marc Janko celebrates after scoring against Sweden during their 2014 World Cup qualifying soccer match at the Ernst Happel stadium in Vienna, June 7, 2013. REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler

Austria's Marc Janko celebrates after scoring against Sweden during their 2014 World Cup qualifying soccer match at the Ernst Happel stadium in Vienna, June 7, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Dominic Ebenbichler

VIENNA (Reuters) - Marc Janko scored with a brilliant diving header to help Austria to a 2-1 win over Sweden in a potentially decisive World Cup qualifier on Friday.

Bayern Munich's David Alaba put Austria ahead with a penalty before Janko struck in a devastating six-minute first-half spell for the hosts in their European Group C match where the two sides are battling for second place behind probable winners Germany.

Johan Elmander for Sweden replied with eight minutes to go as the visitors produced a late rally.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic was largely ineffective for Sweden as they suffered another blow following their goalless draw at home to Ireland in March.

Austria, who last qualified in 1998, have 11 points from six matches, three more than Sweden who have played a game less. Germany lead with 16.

Austria's opener began with a long kick upfield by goalkeeper Robert Almer which bounced off the back of a Sweden player and into the path of Martin Harnik who raced past a defender and was upended by Andreas Isaksson.

Alaba converted the penalty with a low shot which sent Isaksson the wrong way in the 26th minute.

Harnik was involved in the second goal when he floated over a cross from the right and Janko dived in front of his marker and met the ball just before it hit the ground with a header which rocketed into the corner of the net.

Alaba nearly added another with a 25-metre shot early in the second half before Austria handed the initiative to the visitors.

Ibrahomivic sprang into action as he wasted a free kick on the edge of the area by firing straight into the defensive wall, then had header saved at point-blank range by Almer.

With eight minutes to go, he flicked the ball into the path of Elmander who lifted it past Almer. Sweden had a penalty appeal turned down as they pressed for an equaliser in a dramatic finale.

(Writing by Brian Homewood in Berne; Editing by Alison Wildey)

Photo

After wave of QE, onus shifts to leaders to boost economy

DAVOS, Switzerland - Central banks have done their best to rescue the world economy by printing money and politicians must now act fast to enact structural reforms and pro-investment policies to boost growth, central bankers said on Saturday.

Australian Open

Reuters Showcase

RK Laxman Dead

RK Laxman Dead

'Common Man' cartoonist RK Laxman dead at 93  Full Article 

Nuclear Group

Nuclear Group

China urges India to take steps to satisfy standards of NSG  Full Article 

India’s Male Tenor

India’s Male Tenor

India’s lone male tenor wants to ‘Indianise’ opera  Full Article 

Facebook Outage

Facebook Outage

Hacker group claims it is behind outages at Facebook, other sites  Full Article 

U.S. Blizzard

U.S. Blizzard

`Life-threatening' blizzard shuts down much of U.S. Northeast  Full Article 

Australian Open

Australian Open

Berdych ends Nadal tyranny on day of shocks  Full Article 

Fashionable Modi

Fashionable Modi

When Modi met Obama, his name was all over - his suit  Full Article 

Photo

Auschwitz Anniversary

Last survivors recall Auschwitz, ask if lessons learned  Full Article | Related Story 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage