Salihi strike fires Albania past Belarus

TIRANA - Albania beat Belarus 1-0 thanks to a second-half goal by striker Hamdi Salihi in Euro 2012 Group D qualifying on Saturday. Both teams are now on eight points, four behind leaders France.

Attack-minded Albania were denied a bigger victory by some superb saves from Belarus goalkeeper Sergei Veremko.

The winner came on 62 minutes when a header from Erjon Bogdani was not cleared by the Belarus defence, giving Salihi the chance to score from inside the area.

It was the first goal conceded by Belarus in five games in qualifying but at the other end they only managed two real shots on goal.