Muller lift Germany against a combative Scottish squad 2-1
Thomas Müller, Germany forward
Making it 2-1 was a joy, because I know how important those three points are. I could have scored the opener with a header earlier. Football is football – you try your best, but I did not intend to place the header [for the opening goal] where it went it. I just tried to win the aerial challenge against this towering Scotsman.
The Germans will play their next game in Poland were Lewandowski scores 4 of the 7 goals at Gibraltar in the opening. What are the bookmaker odds for this test and can the World champions be defeated?
Steven Naismith, Scotland forward
The performance definitely deserved something. We started more nervously than normal, but as the game wore on we played better stuff, and created as much, if not more than Germany. We had some fantastic chances and on another day would have done better. This is definitely a platform to build on.
Romania wins in Greece 1-0 for first match of As Monaco – C. Ranieri
Claudio Ranieri, Greece coach
It was a bad match, but a draw would have been a fairer result. They had already played six matches and we’d only played one game. We made a lot of mistakes because we weren’t ready. I thank my players and they showed they had the will to do something more, but sometimes they didn’t play for their team-mates.
I’m not angry. It was the first match and nothing has really changed. Greece and Romania remain the favourites in the group.
Victor Piţurcă, Romania coach
This was a very important victory against probably the best team in the group. We knew they were tired because of the World Cup and they were also missing four or five very good players.
We were unfazed by the sending-off of Marica. We were focused and Greece did not play that well, so we won the match. My players realised they had to put on a great display tonight to win here and that’s what they did. We played like a team and that’s what counts. And when you see that some of our more influential players had a good game, it’s no wonder we won.
Without Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal was stunned for the home opener by Albania 1-0
Paulo Bento, Portugal coach
It was a very bad result. We opted to play with a three-man defence in the second half. People have a right to be upset. I’m not making excuses. It wasn’t a lack of commitment on the part of my players, but we weren’t efficient enough while Albania were very efficient.
We are all frustrated because of the result. We could have done better, even though I think we were not that bad. It was a first appearance for some players, like Ricardo Horta and André Gomes, and they played well. Ivan Cavaleiro playing near Éder helped us to get more presence in the box.
Portugal will have a very difficult test in Denmark for their second. A must win and certainly a game they can’t lose early in the campaign to start 0-2.
Former PSG – Lorik Cana, Albania midfielder
It was a dream start, a perfect start for us. We had to start qualification away from home in Portugal, the group favourites – and I still think they are the group favourites. It was a historic result to win against a big team in Europe, so I am very happy for my country and for my people. They were all looking to the national team. This victory is for them and we will try to do the best that we can until the end of qualification.
It’s a great start, but we have a tough group: we have big teams like Denmark, Armenia and Serbia, so starting here gives us a good opportunity to fight until the end.
We scored a goal and defended until the end with great spirit. We have a lot of young players and I hope we can keep on like this.