Third Place winner, March 2009 Photo Contest
Lithuania 2 - 1 Faroe Islands
Lithuanian squad: Žydrūnas Karčemarskas, Kęstutis Ivaškevičius, Andrius Skerla, Vidas Alunderis, Arūnas Klimavičius, Deividas Česnauskis, Deividas Šemberas, Audrius Kšanavičius, Saulius Mikoliūnas, Tomas Danilevičius, Esgaras Jankauskas.
So, victory was won, but there are no reasons to get carried away by it. Even if difference of class was obvious (as it should have been), the constant lapses of concentration in defence nearly cost Lithuanians dearly. It all started brightly with Lithuania attacking and opening up islander's defence quite easily. The first goal came after some eight minutes, when Mikoliūnas delivered the set piece into the box, Klimavičius saw his shot blocked by the goalkeeper and Jankauskas scored on the rebound with an easy tap in. Lithuania used wide players well and could score more, on the other hand Faroe Islands never looked given up and had their chances to equalise. The game itself was quite open and neither team wanted only to sit back in their own half and wait for a chance - surprising from the one side, but probably natural when you take the early goal by Lithuanians into account. After half an hour Lithuania manager Algimantas Liubinskas was forced to make double substitution - both wingers (Deividas Česnauskis and Saulius Mikoliūnas) were struggling with injuries and had to come off. They were replaced by Mindaugas Kalonas and Andrius Velička. Kšanavičius was put into his prefered left wing role and Tomas Danilevičius was forced to go into midfield. Anyway that doesn't prevented him from scoring a goal eight minutes after the break. The move was started by Jankauskas, who delivered an inch perfect pass to Kšanavičius who made decent low cross and Danilevičius had to make the most simple part of the move - to score the goal. That was his 12th goal for Lithuania and he is now joint top scorer of Lithuanian national team. Only Antanas Lingis, who played 70 years ago have scored the same number. The game continued in quite the same fashion with Lithuanians desperately lacking direction in their attacks and islanders having some opportunities (out of nothing I would say) and testing Karčemarskas from time to time. Lithuania attacked less and less with final minutes coming. Midfielder Aurimas Kučys replaced Jankauskas (my choice for MoM). Faroe Islands scored goal deep into a stoppage time when Jacobsen chipped the ball over the goalkeeper Karčemarskas without much challenge from any of defenders. The position of keeper was questionable but I wouldn't blame him as naturally the situation was one on one.
For me the big concern is left back role. Klimavičius is center back and looked shaky filling that role. For my money he was the worst Lithuanian player on the pitch even with midfielder Ivaškevičius filling right back role. Our reserve center back Alunderis IMO was also better than Klimavičius, though he was never as good as Žvirgždauskas (who was suspended) is when he plays.