Football

Iceland Become The Smallest-Ever Country To Qualify For The World Cup

Iceland Become The Smallest-Ever Country To Qualify For The World Cup

The Viking Clap is heading to Russia!

As Irish fans were focusing on events in Cardiff, Iceland were making history in Reykjavik. The heroes of Euro 2016 defeated Kosovo 2-0 to win Group I by two points.

With a 100% record at home, Iceland only lost two games on the road, including a 1-0 defeat to second-placed Croatia. Despite the historic run at Euro 2016 last summer, the team have shown there is no hangover as preparations begin for Russia.

They become the first country to reach the World Cup with a population of under one million. Just over 330,000 people live on the island.

The 2006 Trinidad and Tobago team previously held the record. 11 years ago, the Caribbean nation had a population of 1.3million.

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Iceland's win at the Laugardalsvollur Stadium was celebrated with a fireworks display, before the team and fans made the short trip into the centre of Reykjavik to celebrate the historic night.

Last summer, a reported 99.8% of those watching television in the country at the time saw Iceland defeat England. Their opening game in Russia next summer should at least match that.

Iceland became everyone's second-favourite team in France. Expect more of the same next summer in Russia. Whatever happens, the Icelandic story is a victory for the sport.

SEE ALSO: The Ireland Player Ratings From A Bloody Heroic Performance In Cardiff

Daniel Kelly

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