Germany held again

World Cup round-up
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The Independent Online
The Netherlands and Spain inched closer towards the 1998 World Cup finals with impressive wins against high-quality opposition on Saturday, but the European champions, Germany, were held to a draw for the second match running.

The Dutch chalked up the night's finest scoreline - a 3-0 win against Belgium in Brussels. Arsenal striker Dennis Bergkamp and Real Madrid's Clarence Seedorf did the damage with two goals in the space of four minutes midway through the first half. Wim Jonk completed the win from the penalty spot in injury time.

Victory for the Dutch was revenge for their 1-0 defeat at the hands of their rivals in the US World Cup in 1994, and, alongside their 7-1 thrashing of Wales last month, suggests the Dutch are back to their best after a disappointing European Championship in June. The Netherlands are three points clear of second-placed Belgium in Group Seven.

In Valencia, Spain carved out a 2-0 victory in Group Six against Yugoslavia thanks to Barcelona midfielder Josep Guardiola, who scored the first goal from the penalty spot and set up teenager Raul Gonzalez for the second. Spain are now two points behind Yugoslavia, who were suffering their first defeat in qualifying.

After their shock 1-1 draw with Northern Ireland last month, Germany had to settle for a 0-0 draw against Portugal, the only side to beat them in a World Cup qualifier. The result leaves Portugal top of Group Nine.

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