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Immobile gives Italy late win in Macedonia

Ciro Immobile

Ciro Immobile’s winner ensures only goal difference separates Italy and Spain at the top of Group G

Italy needed a 91st-minute winner from Ciro Immobile to snatch victory over Macedonia in World Cup qualifying.

The Lazio striker headed home his second goal of the game in injury time having earlier equalised against the team ranked 146th in the world.

Ilija Nestorovski and Ferhan Hasani had given Macedonia a 2-1 lead following Andrea Belotti’s opener for Italy.

Italy are joint top of their group on seven points with Spain, who were 2-0 winners over Albania.

In another Group G match, Israel beat Liechtenstein 2-1, with Brighton striker Tomer Hemed scoring both goals for the hosts.

Elsewhere, Newcastle United striker Aleksandar Mitrovic scored twice, and Southampton midfielder Dusan Tadic netted the winner, as Serbia beat Austria 3-2.

Serbia lead Group D ahead of the Republic of Ireland and Wales.

Croatia top Group I after Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic gave them a 1-0 win in Finland.

Iceland are second following a 2-0 victory over Turkey while, in the same group, Ukraine beat Kosovo 3-0.

Live Text

Match ends, Macedonia 2, Italy 3.

Second Half ends, Macedonia 2, Italy 3.

Milovan Petrovic (Macedonia) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Éder (Italy) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Milovan Petrovic (Macedonia).

Foul by Marco Parolo (Italy).

Goran Pandev (Macedonia) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Éder (Italy).

Vance Sikov (Macedonia) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Nicola Sansone (Italy) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stefan Ristovski (Macedonia).

Goal! Macedonia 2, Italy 3. Ciro Immobile (Italy) header from very close range to the top left corner. Assisted by Antonio Candreva with a cross.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Martin Bogatinov (Macedonia) because of an injury.

Offside, Italy. Marco Verratti tries a through ball, but Marco Parolo is caught offside.

Marco Verratti (Italy) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Milovan Petrovic (Macedonia).

Attempt saved. Nicola Sansone (Italy) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Marco Parolo.

Attempt saved. Marco Parolo (Italy) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Antonio Candreva with a cross.

Substitution, Italy. Éder replaces Andrea Belotti.

Substitution, Macedonia. Dusko Trajcevski replaces Ferhan Hasani.

Corner, Italy. Conceded by Martin Bogatinov.

Attempt saved. Antonio Candreva (Italy) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Marco Verratti.

Attempt blocked. Leonardo Bonucci (Italy) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Attempt blocked. Nicola Sansone (Italy) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Marco Verratti.

Attempt blocked. Ciro Immobile (Italy) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Andrea Belotti.

Foul by Andrea Belotti (Italy).

Daniel Mojsov (Macedonia) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Goal! Macedonia 2, Italy 2. Ciro Immobile (Italy) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Antonio Candreva.

Corner, Italy. Conceded by Daniel Mojsov.

Attempt saved. Ezgjan Alioski (Macedonia) left footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Besart Ibraimi.

Corner, Macedonia. Conceded by Andrea Barzagli.

Corner, Macedonia. Conceded by Andrea Barzagli.

Attempt saved. Daniel Mojsov (Macedonia) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Besart Ibraimi with a cross.

Marco Parolo (Italy) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Marco Parolo (Italy).

Ferhan Hasani (Macedonia) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Attempt blocked. Besart Ibraimi (Macedonia) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Milovan Petrovic.

Substitution, Macedonia. Milovan Petrovic replaces Ilija Nestorovski.

Attempt missed. Antonio Candreva (Italy) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/37602793