Denmark, France make Euro 2012

BY foxsports • October 12, 2011

Denmark gained an automatic spot at the 2012 European Championship at the expense of Portugal on Tuesday while France needed a late penalty kick in a 1-1 draw with Bosnia-Herzegovina to qualify.

Former champion Greece and Russia also clinched places at next summer's tournament in Ukraine and Poland with victories on the final night of group qualifying games. Sweden beat the Netherlands 3-2 to advance as the runner-up with the best record from the nine groups.

In South American World Cup qualifying, Venezuela upset Argentina and Lionel Messi 1-0, getting a 61st-minute goal when Fernando Amorebieta redirected a corner kick in.

In exhibitions, the United States lost 1-0 to Ecuador on Jaime Ayovi's 79th-minute goal and Brazil rallied for a 2-1 win at Mexico. After David Luiz's own goal in the 12th, Ronaldino tied it in the 79th with his first international goal since October 2007. Marcelo broke the tie in the 77th.

In European Championship qualifying, a 2-0 defeat in Copenhagen dropped Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo and his teammates into next month's qualification playoffs, along with Turkey, Ireland, Estonia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia and Czech Republic. Montenegro already had clinched second in Group G before a 2-0 loss at Switzerland on Tuesday.

The playoff draw is Thursday.

Defending champion Spain beat Scotland and Germany against Belgium to finish group play with perfect records. The Netherlands' defeat in Stockholm ruined their 100 percent run in qualifying.

England and Italy already had qualified as group winners. The French, needing at least a draw to finish top of Group D, fell behind at the Stade de France in the 40th minute when Edin Dzeko curled home a shot from the edge of the box. Samir Nasri salvaged a point for the hosts when he converted a penalty kick after being brought down just inside the area by defender Emir Spahic.

Denmark had to win to secure first place in Group H and was ahead 2-0 by the 63rd minute on goals by Michael Krohn-Dehli and Nicklas Bendtner. Ronaldo halved the deficit with a goal on a free kick in second-half injury time but it wasn't enough for the Portuguese.

Greece, the surprise 2004 champion, needed goals in the final 11 minutes by substitute Giorgos Fotakis and veteran Angelos Charisteas to secure a 2-1 win over Georgia and reach its third straight European Championship.

It meant second-place Croatia's 2-0 victory over Latvia was in vain, with Greece winning Group F by two points.

As expected, Russia routed Andorra to qualify from Group B. lan Dzagoev scored twice in a 6-0 win in Moscow, and Sergei Ignashevich, Roman Pavlyuchenko, Denis Glushakov and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov also got goals.

Ireland finished second with a 2-1 win over visiting Armenia, capitalizing on the disputed ejection of Armenia goalkeeper Roman Berezovski for hand ball outside the penalty area in the 26th minute. Ireland took a 2-0 lead on Valeri Aleksanyan's own goal and Richard Dunne's close-range finish.

Henrik Mkhitaryan replied two minutes later for Armenia, which would have finished runner-up with a win.

Sweden's first win over the Netherlands since 1924 ensured the team advanced as the best runner-up - but it needed to overturn a 2-1 deficit to do so.

In a four-minute span just after the break, Sebastian Larsson scored a penalty kick and Ola Toivonen converted a powerful shot. The Dutch had recovered from Kim Kallstrom's 14th-minute free kick with goals by Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Dirk Kuyt.

In South American qualifying for the 2014 World Cup, Argentina dropped to 1-1, one point behind Uruguay (1-0-1), which tied 1-1 at Paraguay. Diego Forlan put Uruguay ahead in the 67th, but Richard Ortiz tied it in the final minute for Paraguay (0-0-1).

Colombia (1-0) won 2-1 at Bolivia (0-2) when Radamel Falcao came off the bench and scored in second-half injury time. Dorlan Pabon gave Colombia a 1-0 lead in the 48th minute and Walter Flores tied it in the 85th.

Chile beat visiting Peru 4-2 on goals by Walter Ponce, Eduardo Vargas, Gary Medel and Humberto Suazo, with Claudio Pizarro and Jefferon Farfan scoring for Peru. Both teams are 1-1.

In CONCACAF, Antigua (4-0) moved into the Group F lead with a 10-0 rout of the U.S. Virgin Islands as Haiti (3-0-1) was held to a 2-2 tie by visiting Curacao. Antigua and Haiti play twice next month, and the first-place nation moves on to a third-round group with the United States, Jamaica and Guatemala (4-0), which all but clinched advancement with a 3-1 win over Belize.

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