Nordtveit and Norway suffer defeat

Only one Hoffenheim first team player was in action on Saturday night - Havard Nordtveit. The defender lead Norway in their friendly against Macedonia, but he couldn’t prevent his country from suffering defeat.


Nordtveit won his 37th cap for Norway as side went up against Macedonia in their national stadium. The hosts proved to be the better side, however, with Gordan Pandev and Kire Markoski scoring the decisive goals. Nordtveit and his Norway teammates will now travel to Trnava, where they will play Slovakia on Tuesday night.


The 19-year-old defender was brought on for the Dutch U21s in the 73rd minute of their 8-0 European qualifier win against Andorra. The Austria U21s had a European qualifier of their own losing 3-1 to Serbia. TSG’s Stefan Posch did not make an appearance, but the 18-year-old Christoph Baumgartner of the Hoffenheim U19s came on in the 78th minute to make his debut.  


TSG’s internationals started the break with two important victories – Andrej Kramaric and Croatia beat Greece 4-1 in the first leg of their 2018 World Cup playoff whilst Steven Zuber and Switzerland won 1-0 away at Northern Ireland. Meanwhile, earlier in the day Nadiem Amiri and Philipp Ochs cruised to victory in Azerbaijan with the Germany U21s whilst Robin Hack and Felix Passlack featured for the Germany U20s in a 2-2 draw against Italy.

The Croatians took a huge step towards Russia next year on Thursday evening. When Andrej Kramaric found the back of the net in the 49th minute, the result was already beyond doubt. After goals from Luka Modric, Nikola Kalinic and Ivan Perisic, Kramaric scored his eighth international goal to make it 4-1 and that’s the way it finished. The 26-year-old was replaced in the 82nd minute and can now prepare for Sunday’s second leg in Athens with qualification for the World Cup finals next year within touching distance.

zuber wm playoffs

Switzerland and Steven Zuber also recorded an impressive result in the first leg against Northern Ireland. In a hard-fought game, Ricardo Rodriguez scored the only goal of the game from the penalty spot and put the Swiss in a good position to qualify for Russia next year. Steven Zuber played 87 minutes of the match. The second leg is on Sunday evening in Basel.

Two other TSG players scored for the Germany youth teams on Thursday afternoon. Nadiem Amiri started alongside teammate Philipp Ochs in the Germany U21s’ European qualifier against Azerbaijan and scored the second goal in a 7-0 win for Germany. Felix Passlack and Robin Hack both started for the Germany U20s in a friendly against Italy. Hack scored to make it 2-1 to the Germany youngsters but the game ended 2-2 in Chemnitz.

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