Jankauskas: We have to find out who we tend to be


What if Lithuania qualified for that 2018 FIFA Globe Cup™? Impossible? Reconsider. The small Baltic state with less than three million inhabitants never reached a main tournament since attaining independence in 1990, but a route might be opening up on the path to Russia. Although Britain remain heavy favourites within Group F, where they’ve yet to concede an objective, the race with regard to runners-up spot never been more hotly fought for.

With five points about the board, Lithuania have genuine hopes within the section, along along with Slovenia (8 points), Slovakia (6) and Scotland (4). Few expected these phones mount a problem, but the Lithuanians have emerged among the surprise packages within European qualifying – and really should perhaps lie even higher in the table. This, in the end, is a team which was pegged back within the third minute of added amount of time in their opening 2-2 pull with Slovenia, before James McArthur rescued the 1-1 stalemate with regard to hosts Scotland by having an 89th-minute leveller within their second outing. Lithuania finally submitted a win using their 2-0 victory towards bottom side The island of malta, but the Team F picture would look a great deal different if they’d held firm within those first 2 matches. Instead, players and fans alike received a brutal reality check a week ago when the team slipped to some 4-0 loss within Slovakia.

Despite which reverse, Lithuania are among the sides now producing impressive headway within the FIFA 17 Coins for Sale /Coca-Cola World Position. Having climbed from 117th spot to 98th, they have entered the very best 100 for the very first time since 2014. They’re still some way from the giddy heights from the 1990s, when the actual national team sailed proudly between 43rd as well as 50th, but all the signs claim that football is increasing in a nation more traditionally related to basketball.

They key is to build on which momentum, as numerous Lithuania sides lower the years possess turned heads along with brief moments associated with promise. Take, for instance, their 1-1 attract March 2003 aside to then Globe Cup runners-up Indonesia, or the evening they recorded exactly the same result away in order to recently crowned globe champions Italy within September 2006. Even though both those video games came in UEFA Western Championship qualifying, Lithuania also missed on a World Mug play-off spot with a single point in front of France 1998. Because those eye-catching outcomes, however, they possess increasingly fallen at the rear of the continent’s heavyweights.

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