ZENICA - A late goal
by Edin Dzeko gave Bosnia a 2-1 home win over Romania on
Saturday and boosted the Balkan country's hopes of reaching
their first major tournament as an independent nation.
The result left the Bosnians in a good position to clinch at
least a play-off berth in Group D, having collected seven points
from four matches after Dzeko headed home an 83rd-minute winner
in front of a capacity 15,000 crowd on a bumpy pitch.
Their quest, however, could be derailed by a squabble in the
Bosnian Football Federation (NFSBiH), which has been given an April 1 deadline by UEFA to replace its three-man rotating
presidential system with one in line with FIFA and UEFA
A Congress the NFSBiH has scheduled for Tuesday is the
body's last chance to adhere to UEFA's instructions and avoid
suspension from international competition for the Balkan
country's national team and clubs.
The Bosnians seemed unbothered by the prospect that they
might be playing their last match in the Euro 2012 qualifiers
and created several good chances in the first half, but it was
the visitors who scored against the run of play.
Having survived a fierce onslaught at their end, Romania
took the lead with a goal of superb individual quality when
striker Ciprian Marica chested a deflected cross and gave Bosnia
keeper Kenan Hasagic no chance with an acrobatic volley.
Adrian Mutu missed a sitter to double Romania's lead shortly
after the break and they were punished several minutes later
when Vedad Ibisevic glanced a teasing Zvjezdan Misimovic cross
into the far corner.
Manchester City striker Dzeko, who is yet to score a Premier
League goal for his club, then sent the passionate home crowd
into raptures as he ghosted into the goal-kick area box and
headed a rebound into the empty net.
Bosnia are due to play their next match away to Romania on 3 June.
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