ATHENS, Oct 7 (Reuters) - European champions Greece made it
two wins out of two matches when they edged past Norway 1-0 in
their Euro 2008 Group C qualifier in Athens' Karaiskaki stadium
Greece struck after 32 minutes when Giorgos Karagounis
floated a freekick into the box and Costas Katsouranis volleyed
past Thomas Myhre.
The Greeks pressed the Norwegians relentlessly in search of
an early goal.
Twice, in the opening seven minutes, Yourkas Seitaridis
crossed deep in the box but a handful of Greeks failed to
Norway came close to scoring in the 12th minute when Fredrik
Stromstad's long-range volley from a poor Greek clearance forced
Antonis Nikopolidis to tip the ball over his bar.
They had a second good chance 11 minutes later from Ole
Gunnar Solskjaer, but after sidestepping two defenders, he saw
his low drive fly past Nikopolidis' right post.
Throughout the match, in-form Solskjaer found himself
guarded by at least a pair of tall central Greek defenders in
Sotiris Kyrgiakos and Giorgos Anatolakis.
Greece went in search of a second goal after the break with
striker Angelos Charisteas replacing midfielder Stelios
Giannakopoulos in a bid to break open a shaky Norwegian central
Norway almost got an equaliser but John Arne Riise's low
shot in the 73rd minute scraped Nikopolidis' right post before
Greece could have added a second goal in stoppage time but
Yannis Amanatidis' close-range effort hit the post.
The start of the match was delayed by 50 minutes due to a
Greece next play Bosnia on Wednesday.