Rauf Aliyev rescued a point for Azerbaijan as they put a dent in Belgium's
hopes of finishing second in Euro 2012 qualifying Group A.
The Belgians dominated the match but had only Timmy Simons' penalty to show for
it when Aliyev found the target five minutes from time.
Azerbaijan were hoping to make amends for the heavy 4-1 defeat they suffered in
Brussels in March.
But they had only been playing for 43 seconds when Dries Mertens tested the
home defence with a 25-yard strike which had to be dealt with by goalkeeper
Agayev was at the centre of the action again after 11 minutes when he held onto
a header from Axel Witsel, while Eden Hazard also nodded wide as the Belgians
upped the tempo.
The pair then combined after 32 minutes as Witsel rose to meet Hazard's cross
into the six-yard box, with Agayev brilliantly punching away the midfielder's
Azerbaijan's back line had done most of the running in the first half, but they
created a chance before the interval when Vagif Javadov tried his luck with a
drive from 20 yards which fell wide of the target.
Their resistance was finally broken 10 minutes into the second half, though,
when Rashad Farhad Sadygov brought down Hazard in the area. Simons took the
resulting penalty and this time Agayev could not keep the ball out.
At the other end, Belgium goalkeeper Simon Mignolet had his first feel of the
ball after 70 minutes when saving a free-kick from Mahir Shukurov.
But chances remained few and far between for the home side and Shukurov ensured
they did not fall further behind when he put himself between Witsel's
right-footed shot and the net three minutes later.
It was another opportunity missed for Belgium and they were made to pay five
minutes from time when Shukurov set up Aliyev to head home an unlikely equaliser
from close range.