Greece played a disastrous game in Bosnia on Friday to suffer a 3-1 defeat that all but condemns it to missing out on direct qualification to the 2014 World Cup finals.
Major problems in defense and midfield saw Greece unable to contain the might of Edin Dzeko in the Bosnian attack or remind anything of the solid Greek team that used to be very hard to beat.
On Friday night at Zenica the Greeks were a team with little cohesion and imagination, and conceding three goals was flattering for the poorly prepared men of coach Fernando Santos.
Greek man-marking in the box was so soft that Manchester City’s Dzeko rose unhindered in the 29th minute to head the opening goal in, and so clumsy that Giorgos Tzavellas conceded a totally needless penalty in the 35th.
Then, when goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis saved the penalty kick, the Greek defense made a mess out of its effort to clear the ball from the box, effectively turning in a Nenad Ibisevic weak effort.
As if that hadn’t been enough, Dzeko scored his second in the 53rd to add insult to injury for the Greeks, who are now three points behind group leaders Bosnia in the standings.
Fanis Gekas’s consolation goal in injury time from a Giorgos Samaras cross from the left does not alter the overall picture of the game, given that Bosnia had more chances to add to their tally.