LISBON, Sept 12 (Reuters) - Portugal suffered a further setback in their hopes of reaching Euro 2008 when they drew 1-1 with Serbia in a Group A qualifier that was marred by an ugly fracas on Wednesday.
As the game drew to a close, players pushed and shoved each
other in a row that finished with Portugal coach Luiz Felipe
Scolari lashing out at Serbian defender Ivica Dragutinovic.
'I just touched his hair a bit,' Scolari said.
The melee appeared to have been started by a red card for
Dragutinovic in stoppage time.
Cheered on by almost 45,000 fans at a packed Alvalade
stadium, Portugal went ahead after 11 minutes with a superb
23-metre free kick by Simao Sabrosa after a foul by Nenad
Kovacevic on Cristiano Ronaldo.
After missing several opportunities in the second half,
Portugal conceded the equaliser in the 88th minute, Branislav
Ivanovic scrambling the ball home after a free kick by Dejan
Portugal players appealed for offside but German referee
Markus Merk ignored the protests.
Portugal, who drew 2-2 with Poland last Saturday after
conceding an 87th minute equaliser, stay in third place on 17
points. They are two points behind Finland and four from leaders
Poland, who have both played a game more.