The Republic of Ireland’s hopes of making it to France 2016 remain in a healthy state after a hard-fought draw in a very foggy Bilino Polje Stadium on Friday night.
Ireland boss Martin O’Neill had to do without a whole host of first-choice players, including the injured Shane Long and suspended captain John O’Shea.
For long periods of the game, the visitors were second best, with Hertha Berlin striker Vedad Ibisevic a threat up front and Lazio’s Senad Lulic a danger on the flanks.
At the other end of the pitch, the Irish attack, spearheaded by Daryl Murphy, struggled to impose themselves.
After the break, the fog shrouded the stadium, with the game in danger of being called off.
Amidst the fog, the Irish eventually took the lead on 82 minutes when Robbie Brady cut inside before beating Chelsea ‘keeper Asmir Begovic at his near post.
However, Ireland’s hopes of securing a precious away win were extinguished just three minutes later, with Edin Dzeko netting from close-range after good work from Ognjen Vranje.
The game would end all-square, a result which the Irish will no doubt be happier with ahead of the return leg in Dublin.