Albania joy at Greece win
By Patrick Haond
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Albanian duo Lorik Cana and Edwin Murati were delighted to beat Greece.Albanian duo Lorik Cana and Edwin Murati could not contain their delight, following their World Cup victory over European champions Greece.
The neighbouring countries locked horns in Tirana on Saturday in their opening game in Group Two, with Greece widely expected to claim the spoils.
But two early goals for Albania, including the first from Murati, enabled the hosts to pick up a valuable 2-1 success.
Paris Saint Germain midfielder Cana was ecstatic after the result and hailed Albania's achievement in starting the qualifying programme with a win.
"It is something great, a memory I will keep all my life," Cana told L'Equipe.
"There were more than 200,000 people in the streets. We had difficulties getting out of the stadium, some players had tears in their eyes.
"We had prepared our organisation to disturb them. I marked Charisteas and he didn't score.
"Our group is very difficult but seeing Albania as the leader of this group, even after just one day, it is historical."
Murati, who plays his club football in Greece with Iraklis, felt the Euro 2004 heroes were over-confident going in to the tie.
He commented: "To us it is an enormous derby. It was such an important match that fireworks were set off before kick-off.
"Our fans came from everywhere - Italy, Kosovo, Macedonia, Greece and Germany. The crowd was so fiery. I have never seen that in six years with the national team.
"Entering the pitch, I had goose pimples. They came as champions, believing it would be easy but after 11 minutes we led 2-0."