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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 June 2005, 15:54 GMT 16:54 UK
Scotland 2-0 Moldova
Scotland celebrate Christian Dailly's goal
Scotland resurrected their World Cup qualification campaign as second-half goals from two substitutes gave them a nervous win over Moldova.

Christian Dailly pounced after a mistake from Evghenii Hmaruc to force the ball home after the goalkeeper let slip a Lee McCulloch cross.

Ghenadie Olexici twice came close to equalising as Moldova gave up their defensive tactics in response.

But James McFadden fired home the second in the closing moments.

A win had been a must for both sides, the Scots starting the game above Group Five's bottom side on goal difference after collecting just two points from their first four games.

Walter Smith had lost seven of his original squad to injury for his first home match as Scotland manager.

So Lee McCulloch found himself thrown up front despite having played much of the season in midfield for Wigan Athletic.

But the new 3-5-2 formation started brightly and a low 25-yard drive from Kenny Miller brought Hmaruc into the action after just six minutes.

Fit-again Darren Fletcher sent a powerful effort flying a few feet over the crossbar and a looping effort from McCulloch ended on the roof of the net.

Scotland's momentum was disrupted when Jackie McNamara, who had been asked to play out of position at left wing-back after a late injury to Neil McCann, had to be withdrawn himself after 26 minutes.

The Celtic man was replaced with Dailly, who switched wings with Graham Alexander.

Moldova's first threat came immediately via a cross from the area vacated by McNamara, Vadim Boret directing his header straight at goalkeeper Craig Gordon.

The visitors were without their top striker, Iurie Miterev, and were successful in their plan to frustrate the Scots.

Smith's side rallied late in the first half, Dailly stealing in at the back post but sending his header wide from eight yards.

And Hmaruc blocked at close range from Paul Hartley after the midfielder pounced on a casual, chested back-pass from Stanislav Ivanov.

Serghei Lascencov, booked for one foul on McCulloch and close to a second for another challenge and feigning injury, was replaced during the break.

Moldova perhaps paid for that defensive change when Dailly put Scotland ahead.

McCulloch powered his way past a couple of challenges before delivering a cross that was fumbled by Hmaruc before being forced over the line by the substitute.

Moldova came close to an immediate reply, Serghei Rogachev's shot on the turn from the edge of the box being parried for a corner by Gordon.

Olexici poked an effort a foot wide after hesitancy in the Scottish defence then fired into the side-netting.

But McFadden had the final word when he drifted into the box and sent a shot into the net off the foot of defender Iuri Priganiuc.


Scotland: Gordon, Weir, Pressley, Webster, Alexander, Fletcher, Ferguson, Hartley, McNamara (Dailly 26), Kenny Miller, McCulloch (McFadden 74).
Subs Not Used: Esson, Steven Caldwell, Lee Miller, Riordan, Thompson.

Booked: Hartley.

Goals: Dailly 53, McFadden 89.

Moldova: Hmaruc, Savinov, Olexici, Catinsus (Covalciuc 60), Lascencov (Covalenco 45), Epureanu, Priganiuc, Ivanov, Boret, Dadu, Rogachev (Frunza 82).
Subs Not Used: Romanenco, Barisev, Cebotari.

Booked: Lascencov, Boret.

Att: 45,317

Ref: Eric Braamhaar (Netherlands)


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