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PHOTOS: England, Germany register big wins in WC qualifiers

November 12, 2016 13:00 IST
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Images from the football World Cup qualifier matches on Friday:

England keep their heads to down Scotland 3-0

Daniel Sturridge

IMAGE: Daniel Sturridge celebrates scoring a goal for England. Photograph: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

A trio of thundering headers gave England a thumping victory over their oldest foes as Scotland put up a fight before being swept aside 3-0 in Friday's World Cup qualifier at Wembley.

Daniel Sturridge's bullet header in the first half and equally impressive efforts after the break from Adam Lallana and Gary Cahill ensured England emerged from international football's oldest fixture having consolidated their lead at the top of Group F.

While it was not the one-sided romp the scoreline suggests and England only pulled clear in the second half having survived some nervy moments, the result will have strengthened interim boss Gareth Southgate's chances of claiming the role on a permanent basis.A trio of thundering headers gave England a thumping victory over their oldest foes as Scotland put up a fight before being swept aside 3-0 in Friday's World Cup qualifier at Wembley.

Daniel Sturridge's bullet header in the first half and equally impressive efforts after the break from Adam Lallana and Gary Cahill ensured England emerged from international football's oldest fixture having consolidated their lead at the top of Group F.

While it was not the one-sided romp the scoreline suggests and England only pulled clear in the second half having survived some nervy moments, the result will have strengthened interim boss Gareth Southgate's chances of claiming the role on a permanent basis.

With his side having moved onto 10 points from four matches, two clear of nearest rivals Slovenia, Southgate now looks almost certain to be appointed the permanent replacement to Sam Allardyce.

Gnabry debut hat-trick as Germany crush San Marino

IMAGE: Germany's Serge Gnabry, left, celebrates with team mate Jonas Hector after scoring a goal. Photograph: Stefano Rellandini/Reuters

Serge Gnabry scored a debut hat-trick as a second-string Germany team demolished San Marino 8-0 on Friday to stay top of their World Cup qualifying group with maximum points from four matches.

The Germans have now made their best ever start to a World Cup qualifying campaign with four straight victories and no goals conceded.

German coach Joachim Loew, without more than six regulars including Jerome Boateng, Manuel Neuer and Toni Kroos, gave Werder Bremen winger Gnabry his first cap and he did not disappoint.

It was always likely to be a one-sided game as the world champions, second in the rankings, took on a team 199 places below them.

Sami Khedira opened the German account after seven minutes from an Ilkay Guendogan pass and Gnabry grabbed his first goal to double the lead in pouring rain.

The 21-year-old, joint top scorer and silver medallist at this year's Olympic Games, volleyed in his second early in the second half after full back Jonas Hector turned centre forward for Germany's third goal.

Hector scored again just past the hour as San Marino, consisting mainly of amateur players, ran out of steam. Gnabry completed a memorable debut for Germany by volleying in his third goal before a San Marino own goal in the 82nd.

"I did not count on scoring three goals on my debut," said Gnabry, who moved to Werder this season after failing to win a regular first-team place at Arsenal.

"I am very happy. The last two years were difficult but now I am playing many games and am in scoring form. I hope it will continue."

The win lifted Germany to 12 points from four games at the top of Group C, having kept a clean sheet in every match.

Payet shines as France beat Sweden

Dimitri Payet

IMAGE: Dimitri Payet celebrates scoring a goal. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

France midfielder Dimitri Payet scored the winner after setting up the equaliser in a 2-1 victory over Sweden in a top-of-the-table clash as they opened up a three-point lead in World Cup qualifying Group A at the Stade de France on Friday.

The visitors went ahead in the 54th minute through Emil Forsberg before Paul Pogba and Payet hit back with goals in the 58th and 65th minutes respectively to put France on 10 points ahead of Sweden after four games.

The Netherlands, who travel to Luxembourg on Sunday, are in third place on four points.

A minute's silence was held before kickoff to mark the first anniversary of the Paris attacks that killed 130 people on Friday Nov. 13 when bars, restaurants and the stadium where Les Bleus were playing a friendly against Germany were targeted.

French president Francois Hollande, who was also at the France v Germany game last year, attended Friday's match along with invited presidents of the French Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 clubs.

"We have to remember. One year ago, almost to the day, we were here for a friendly game and three bombs were detonated, with one man being killed," Hollande told French TV.

"We have to remember there were 130 people who died and hundreds of others who were injured. For them and for those who survived we must remember."

Security was tight, with some 1,200 stewards and 400 police officers deployed in and around the stadium but there were no incidents reported.

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Source: REUTERS
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