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Wednesday, 20 November, 2002, 13:16 GMT
Clockwatch: Azerbaijan 0-2 Wales
Injury-ravaged Wales continue their 100% record in Group Nine away to Azerbaijan in Baku, opening up a five-point lead at the top of the table.

Latest action appears first - scroll down for earlier updates.


Full time: Azerbaijan 0-2 Wales


90 +1 mins: Wales manager Mark Hughes sends Paul Trollope on for Robinson, who only just makes it onto the pitch before the final whistle goes.

89 mins: Earnshaw is still running his heart out up front, closing down space, and gets a deserved rest as Wigan's Neil Roberts comes on.

86 mins: Giggs shows his experience by taking the ball into Azerbaijan's right-hand corner, the keep-ball running a vital minute off the clock.

83 mins: Barnard's unsubtle shove on Ismaylov gives the Azeri a free-kick in a dangerous position, with Jones eventually required to clear with his feet.

81 mins: Ismaylov breaks into the Wales box from the right but Jones again comes to the rescue, standing tall at his near post and saving the close-range shot.

79 mins: Azerbaijan break forward in numbers but Speed does brilliantly in the holding midfield position to put in another crucial tackle, making up for his earlier mistake.

76 mins: Gurban Gurbanov intercepts Speed's sloppy pass on the edge of the Welsh penalty area but shoots just over a relieved Jones.

74 mins: What could be Azerbaijan's final throw of the dice to get back in the game, as Asadov replaces home skipper Tarlan Akhmedov.

70 mins: Cardiff defender Rhys Weston replaces Delaney as the Aston Villa man has begun to limp.

69 mins: Barnard earns a booking for tugging the impressive Ismaylov back.

67 mins: Wales gain a two-goal cushion as Hartson leaps high at the far post to head Davies' free-kick past Gasanzade's dive.
Azerbaijan 0-2 Wales

65 mins: Ismaylov makes an immediate impact, racing through the Wales midfield and setting up a shooting opportunity that Jones saves well.

64 mins: Mamedov chops down Speed and is shown the yellow card.

63 mins: Speed wins the ball, makes a reverse pass to Giggs who hoists the ball for Robinson. The Portsmouth midfielder attempts a spectacular volley but it goes well wide.

61 mins: Second change for the home side, as Makhmud Gurbanov makes way for Farukh Ismaylov.

57 mins: Azerbaijan are looking dangerous in possession but the good work is being wasted by their front men's seeming reluctance to attack Wales' six-yard box.

54 mins: Gurban Gurbanov plays a neat one-two with Vasilyev, only to slice his shot wide of Jones' left-hand upright.

51 mins: Speed makes a textbook, vital tackle to dispossess Makhmud Gurbanov in the left of the Wales penalty area.

47 mins: Vadim Vasilyev gets himself one-on-one with Wales left-back Barnard but falls over the ball and kicks the turf in annoyance.

46 mins: Azerbaijan manager Asker Abdullayef sends on Fizuli Mamedov for the second half, as Carl Robinson and Giggs take the kick-off.


Half-time: Azerbaijan 0-1 Wales


45 mins: Makhmud Gurbanov's free-kick is fielded comfortably by Jones in what turns out to be the last attack of the half.

43 mins: Darren Barnard gets away with a lecture after sending Aliyev spinning with a tackle.

38 mins: Kerimov wastes a promising Azeri move by blazing his cross-shot high over the bar.

36 mins: Earnshaw is brought down on another run, Giggs spreads the free-kick wide to Delaney and his deep cross is cleared for a corner. Speed gets another header on target but the keeper is well placed.

34 mins: Wales' Page follows Sadygov into Belgian referee Luc Huyghe's book as the Sheffield United defender catches Aslan Kerimov late.

32 mins: First booking of the game, as Rashat Sadygov crudely chops Earnshaw down from behind as the Cardiff youngster threatens to race clear.

31 mins: Simon Davies is limping after a tackle but is trying to run the knock off.

29 mins: Giggs wins Wales' second corner, Gasanzade flaps at it and Hartson's shot comes off the underside of the crossbar and bounces away.

25 mins: Aliyev breaks the Wales off-side trap and looks certain to score, only for Paul Jones to race off his line and palm the shot away.

21 mins: Andy Melville times his tackle on Aliyev to perfection as the Azeri striker races into the Wales penalty area.

19 mins: Mark Delaney powers down the Wales right flank and crosses for Hartson, but the Celtic striker's header is straight at Gasanzade.

18 mins: Good work by Azeri left-back Adaim Niftaliyev, who intercepts a dangerous ball over the top meant for Earnshaw.

16 mins: Rob Earnshaw picks up the ball and drives at the heart of the Azeri defence, drawing defenders before feeding Giggs whose shot is blocked.

13 mins: Wales are clearly calmed by the early success, harrying their opponents when defending, then looking to get forward quickly when they gain possession.

9 mins: An unmarked Gary Speed scores from the resulting corner with a powerful header.
Azerbaijan 0-1 Wales

8 min: Hartson goes past two defenders racing in from the left, cuts it back to Giggs only for Gasanzade to make a fine double save.

7 mins: First penetrating play from Wales as Ryan Giggs crosses from the left towards John Hartson in the middle, only for goalkeeper Djakhangir Gasanzade to gather.

5 mins: Wales are being penned back in their own half, as the Azeri players take the game to their visitors in search of their first Group Nine goal.

4 mins: Danger again for Wales from another set piece, as Aliyev shaves the post after arriving late in the box.

2 mins: Robert Page commits the first foul of the match and Azerbaijan produce a well worked free-kick, with Samir Aliyev scuffing his shot wide.

Kick-off 1500 GMT: Azerbaijan get the game underway and immediately hoist the ball towards the Wales defence.


Pre-match news:
Wales manager Mark Hughes is rocked by another injury, as Cardiff defender Danny Gabbidon is ruled out just an hour before kick-off at the Tofig Bakhramov Stadium.

Gabbidon is replaced in the starting line-up by Sheffield United's Robert Page.

The other changes see Carl Robinson, Robert Earnshaw and Darren Barnard come into the starting line-up, with Gary Speed moving into midfield.


Azerbaijan: Hasanzadekh, Neftaliyev, Kerimov, Akhmedov, Imamaliyev, Yadullaev, Makhmud Gurbanov, Sadygov, Gurban Gurbanov, Vasilyev, Aliyev.
Subs: Magomedov, Ruslan Musayev, Gambarov, Asadov, Farukh Ismaylov, Fizuli Mamedov, Azer Mamedov.

Wales: Jones, Delaney, Melville, Page, Barnard, Earnshaw, Davies, Robinson, Speed, Giggs, Hartson.
Subs: Crossley, Evans, Thomas, Weston, Trollope, Williams, Neil Roberts.

Ref: Luc Huyghe (Belgium).


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20 Nov 02 | Internationals
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