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First blood to Croatia and Swiss in World Cup qualifying playoffs

Switzerland's 1-0 win over Northern Ireland was marked by controversy

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First blood to Croatia and Swiss in World Cup qualifying playoffs

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Croatia have one foot in next summer’s World Cup finals after beating Greece 4-1 in the first leg of Europe’s qualifier play-offs.

Statistically speaking, the Greeks have a 10% chance of overturning that result when the two teams meet again in the second and decisive tie in Athens on Sunday.

Northern Ireland must go to Switzerland on Sunday and win if they want to make it to Russia for the country’s fourth World Cup finals appearance.

A controversial Ricardo Rodriguez penalty gave the Swiss a 1-0 win in the first leg in Belfast.