Serbia 1-1 Wales: Mitrovic leveller denies depleted Welsh three points

Serbia and Wales played out a 1-1 draw in a World Cup 2018 qualifying match at the Crvena Zvezda stadium in Belgrade.

Serbia 1-1 Wales: Mitrovic leveller denies depleted Welsh three points
Serbia 1 Wales 1: Aleksandar Mitrovic denies Wales win for a second time
Serbia
1 1
Wales
Serbia : Stojkovic, Ivanovic, Nastasic, Vukovic, Rukavina, Milivojevic (Gudelj, min. 63), Matic, Kolarov, Kostic (Prijovic, min. 67), Tadic, Mitrovic.
Wales: Hennessey, Chester, Williams, Davies, Gunter, Richards, Ledley, Edwards (Huws, min. 73), Ramsey, Allen, Vokes (Lawrence, min. 85).
SCORE: 0-1, min. 35, Ramsey. 1-1, min. 73, Mitrovic.
REFEREE: Manuel De Sousa (POR). Booked: Stojkovic (min. 33), Milivojevic (min. 34), Allen (min. 56), Richards (min. 71), Matic (min. 90).
INCIDENTS: FIFA World cup 2018 European qualifying group D match between Serbia and Wales. The match was played at the Crvena Zvezda stadium, Belgrade, Serbia.

For the second time in World Cup qualifying, Aleksandar Mitrovic denied Wales a win over Serbia thanks to a late equaliser. 

Drawing run goes on

Wales' run of draws continues then, as they played out a fifth straight stalemate in qualifying. Chris Coleman's team came within 20 minutes of victory in this one after Aaron Ramsey gave them a first half lead from the penalty spot. 

The game came alive in the 34th minute when the visitors were rewarded a penalty after Sam Vokes was dragged down out of the air by Crystal Palace midfielder, Luka Milivojevic. Ramsey stepped up and cheekily dinked the penalty just inside the right post, if not in polished fashion.

Newcastle United man Mitrovic would deny Wales all three points again however, just like he did in Cardiff back in November. James Chester took a gamble on intercepting a through ball and missed allowing substitute, Aleksandar Prijovic to get in behind and then slide the ball to his left for Mitrovic who fired into the near post past Wayne Hennessy left footed. 

Game of few chances

There hasn't been much to separate the top four teams in this qualifying group and this game played out just as you might have expected with both teams looking quite nervy and cagey. There had been a flurry of half chances for Serbia leading up to the Ramsey goal, with right wing back Antonio Rukavina putting in a few decent balls for Mitrovic, but the hosts struggled to create anyhting clear cut all night.

Wales had less overall chances, but they had the better oppurtunites on goal even without star Gareth Bale who was suspended. Sam Vokes was a handful all game in the air and he could have doubled his team's lead on the hour mark when he got a clean header from a Ledley corner just six yards out, but he headed over.

Ramsey had the best chance to win the game just 10 minutes from time, as him and Joe Allen combined well. Allen drove through the midfield and slid a ball through for Ramsey on the right side of the box, but he was denied by Vladmir Stojkovic who made a crucial save with his legs at the near post.

Qualification chances

Wales will feel like this was a good point away from home especially without Bale, but things in group D remain as they were with themselves and Austria four points back of the Republic of Ireland and Serbia at the top of the group with only four games left. 

International Football