BARCELONA – Andre Silva and Bernardo Silva both struck as Portugal came from behind to beat Poland 3-2 and take control of UEFA Nations League Group A3 on Thursday.
Russia and Sweden drew 0-0 in Group B2 in Kaliningrad, leaving the hosts top on four points despite being unable to find the breakthrough.
Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski won his 100th cap for Poland in Chorzow but his side stumbled at home against the Euro 2016 winners, who have won their opening two fixtures and are on six points, leaving Poland and Italy with one each.
“We showed our quality to go 3-1 up but from then we had some issues. We weren’t dynamic with the ball,” said Portugal coach Fernando Santos.
“We had to suffer towards the end, but we created the most danger in the last few minutes and were deserved winners.”
Portugal found the net three times despite Juventus striker Cristiano Ronaldo being left out of the squad amid rape allegations in the United States, which he denies.
Poland took the lead after a superb cross from Rafal Kurzawa found Krzysztof Piatek at the back post, with the striker heading home his first goal for his country in the 18th minute.
Andre Silva continued his impressive club form with Sevilla by grabbing the equalizer after 31 minutes, tucking home from close range after good work by Benfica midfielder Pizzi.
Poland’s Kamil Glik slid in to score an own goal just before half-time and Bernardo Silva netted from the edge of the box as Portugal took control of the game.
Santos’s side were dominating possession and although Jakub Blaszczykowski’s well-struck drive pulled Poland back into the game as he made a record 103rd appearance for his country, the visitors held on to win.
A fine performance from World Cup star Denis Cheryshev helped Russia shade their draw with Sweden but neither team had the necessary quality in front of goal to find the net.
Russia substitute Daler Kuzyaev nearly found a late winner but Sweden goalkeeper Robin Olsen produced a fine save to keep out his curling effort, which earned his side their first point in the competition, although they remain bottom behind Turkey.
In Group C1 Scotland fell 2-1 in Israel, taking the lead through a Charlie Mulgrew penalty, but Dor Peretz equalized and the visitors saw John Souttar sent off for two yellow cards.
A Kieran Tierney own goal capped a disappointing night for Alex McLeich’s side, losing to a team ranked 94th in the world and booed off by the visiting fans, leaving the two teams level on three points along with Albania.
“It was maybe not the best game for Scotland but we had a really good day,” said Israel coach Andi Herzog. “If we want to qualify, we have to repeat that against Albania on Sunday.”
Romania won 2-1 at Lithuania with a last-gasp goal in Group C4, with Serbia triumphing 2-0 at Montenegro in the other match to go top, thanks to two goals from Fulham hitman Aleksandar Mitrovic.
In Group D3 Azerbaijan earned a comfortable 3-0 win at Faroe Islands, while Kosovo won 3-1 at home against Malta and are group leaders. -DPA