Euro 2008 Round-up: Podolski hits four as Germany run riot in 13-0 victory

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Germany crushed San Marino with a record-breaking 13-0 win last night, the striker Lukas Podolski scoring four in their Euro 2008 Group D qualifier. The victory is a record in a European Championship qualifying match - bettering Spain's 12-1 victory over Malta in December 1983.

Joachim Loew's side were 6-0 up by the interval against hopeless opposition and never eased up as they humiliated their mostly amateur opponents.

Bastian Schweinsteiger, Miroslav Klose and Thomas Hitzlsperger all scored two goals each with Michael Ballack, Arne Friedrich and Bernd Schneider (penalty) also on target.

The result is Germany's best ever in a competitive, non-Olympic game and surpasses their 12-0 victory over Cyprus in a 1969 World Cup qualifier. Germany's all-time record win was a 16-0 victory over Russia in the 1912 Olympics. The result was also the worst in San Marino's history.

The farce was summed up in the last minute when the Germans were awarded a penalty. The goalkeeper Jens Lehmann raced up the pitch to take it. But the Germans had second thoughts and Bernd Schneider scored from the spot. The victory maintains Germany's 100 per cent start to qualifying after a 1-0 win over the Republic of Ireland.

In England's Group E, Israel beat Andorra 4-1 in the Netherlands last night. The West Ham playmaker Yossi Benayoun, the Israel captain, scored the opener. Elsewhere in the group, Russia and Croatia played out a goalless draw.

Marcus Allback scored two goals as Sweden beat Liechtenstein 3-1, while in Group B, Ukraine overcame Georgia 3-2 in Kiev, with the Chelsea striker Andrei Shevchenko on target.

The Czech Republic won their "local derby" in Slovakia 3-0, while Robin van Persie, the Arsenal forward, scored twice and Dirk Kuyt once as the Netherlands defeated Belarus 3-0. Portugaldrew 1-1 in Finland.

The England Under-21s reached the qualification play-offs for next year's European Under-21 Championship after a late winner from James Milner gave them victory over Switzerland in Lucerne last night. Theo Walcott and David Nugent were also on target.

Comments