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Saturday 23 March 2013

Road to Brazil: League players on target in Europe

Thirteen players in the Barclays Premier League scored during World Cup qualifying in Europe

  • Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain shoots to make it 2-0 for England

  • Jermain Defoe gets the second of his two goals against San Marino

  • Frank Lampard scored England's fifth

  • Wayne Rooney made it 6-0 with a free-kick

  • Daniel Sturridge got a goal soon after coming on for England

  • Aaron Ramsey equalised for Wales from the penalty spot

  • A minute later Hal Robson-Kanu headed in Wales's winner

  • Edin Dzeko celebrates as his two goals helped Bosnia past Greece

  • Iceland's Gylfi Sigurdsson in action against Slovenia

  • Eden Hazard scored Belgium's second goal from the penalty spot

  • Robin van Persie in action for the Netherlands against Estonia

  • Olivier Giroud opens the scoring for France against Georgia

  • Shane Long in action for Republic of Ireland as they battled to a draw with Sweden

Players from the Barclays Premier League were in the thick of the action in the UEFA section of the qualifying for the FIFA 2014 World Cup, with 13 finding the back of the net.

­Group A

Scotland 1-2 Wales
Goals from Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey and Reading’s Hal Robson-Kanu secured a come-from-behind victory for Wales at Hampden Park. Scotland, who were led by Wigan’s Gary Caldwell, suffered an early blow when Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher was carried off on a stretcher with an ankle injury. Gordon Strachan’s went in 1-0 up at half-time but Norwich City’s Robert Snodgrass conceded a penalty and received a second yellow card to allow Ramsey to level and a minute later Robson-Kanu headed in the winner. Ramsey also was sent off in injury-time. Spurs’ Gareth Bale was withdrawn at half-time with an upset stomach, while West Bromwich Albion goalkeeper Boaz Myhill played in goal for Wales.

Also playing for Scotland were Wigan’s James McArthur and Shaun Maloney and West Brom’s Graham Dorrans. Stoke City’s Charlie Adam was a second-half substitute, while Steven Whittaker (Norwich), Steven Naismith (Everton) and Barry Bannan (Aston Villa) remained on the Scotland bench.

FYR Macedonia 0-2 Belgium
Belgium started with seven Barclays Premier League players (a further two, Thibault Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne, are registered with Chelsea but play on loan abroad) in Skopje. Eden Hazard, of Chelsea, got the second goal, from the penalty spot. The other starters were Marouane Fellaini (Everton), Thomas Vermaelen (Arsenal), Jan Vetonghen, Mousa Dembele (both Spurs), while Vincent Kompany (Manchester City), Kevin Mirallas (Everton), Romelu Lukaku (West Bromwich Albion) and Simon Mignolet (Sunderland) were unused substitutes.

Croatia 2-0 Serbia
The qualifying hopes of the Manchester City pair of Aleksandr Kolarov, who was booked, and Matija Nastasic were hit as Serbia went down to local rivals Croatia in Zagreb. Everton’s Nikica Jelavic was an unused substitute for Croatia.

Group B

Czech Republic 0-3 Denmark
Both captains in this qualifying match in Prague were from the Barclays Premier League. Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech led the Czech Republic while Liverpool’s Daniel Agger wore the armband for Denmark. Arsenal’s Tomas Rosicky was a 61st-minute substitute for the home side but could not turn around the match in their favour.

Bulgaria 6-0 Malta
Fulham’s Stanislav Manolev was unused substitute in the rout in Sofia.

Group C

Sweden 0-0 Republic of Ireland
A Republic of Ireland team with eight of the starting XI plying their trade in the Barclays Premier League frustrated Sweden in Stockholm. Team-mates from two clubs lined up on opposite sides. Shane Long against Jonas Olsson (WBA), and James McClean and John O’Shea versus Sebastian Larsson (Sunderland). Seamus Coleman (Everton) was booked, as was Wigan Athletic’s James McCarthy. Other starters were: Jon Walters and Marc Wilson (both Stoke), Ciaran Clark (Aston Villa). Norwich City’s Wes Hoolahan was a 77th-minute substitute. Fulham’s Alexander Kacaniklic also started for Sweden.

Kazakhstan 0-3 Germany
Arsenal’s Per Mertesacker and Lukas Podolski both featured as Germany eased past Kazakhstan 3-0 in Astana. Mertesacker played the whole match while Podolski was an early substitute.

Austria 6-0 Faroe Islands
West Ham United’s Emanuel Pogatetz started in the Austria defence while Aston Villa’s Andreas Weimann did not manage to get a goal after coming on in the 63 rd minute for the home side.

Group D

Netherlands 3-0 Estonia
Manchester United striker Robin van Persie got the second goal for the Netherlands in this victory. Swansea’s Jonathan De Guzman also started for the home side but played 83 minutes while Villa’s Ron Vlaar and De Guzman’s clubmate Michel Vorm remained on the Dutch bench.

Hungary 2-2 Romania
West Bromwich Albion’s Gabriel Tamas was in the Romania team that twice fought from behind to earn a point. Manchester City goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon was an unused substitute.

Andorra 0-2 Turkey
Fulham midfielder Kerim Frei came on in injury time for Turkey once the match was safe in Andorra.

Group E

Slovenia 1-2 Iceland
Tottenham Hotspur’s Gylfi Sigurdsson got both goals for Iceland as they beat Slovenia in Ljubliana.

Norway 0-1 Albania
Fulham’s Brede Hangeland and Southampton’s Vegard Forren were in Norway’s defence for the shock home defeat in Oslo. Forren was booked and Manchester United striker Joshua King was unable to make a difference for Norway after coming on 62 minutes.

Group F

Israel 3-3 Portugal
QPR’s Tal Ben Haim played the 90 minutes for Israel in a dramatic draw in Ramat Gan. Chelsea’s Yossi Benayoun came off the bench for Israel in the 81st minute, while Swansea City’s Itay Schechter was an unused substitute.

Luxembourg 0-0 Azerbaijan

Northern Ireland P-P Russia (due to be played 23 March)

Group G

Bosnia-Herzegovina 3-1 Greece
Manchester City’s Edin Dzeko scored twice in the comfortable win in Zenica. Asmir Begovic, the Stoke City goalkeeper, conceded a late consolation against a Greece team for whom Fulham’s Giorgios Karagounis was captain.

Slovakia 1-1 Lithuania
Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel captained Slovakia in their draw in Zilina. He was also booked.

Liechtenstein 1-1 Latvia

Group H

San Marino 0-8 England
Spurs forward Jermain Defoe led the way with two goals as England routed San Marino. After the deadlock was broken by an own goal, Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain doubled the lead before Defoe, Manchester United Ashley Young’s and Chelsea’s Frank Lampard made it 5-0 before the break. Wayne Rooney (Man Utd) scored with a free-kick after half-time before being replaced by Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) who scored the seventh. Defoe got his second and England’s eighth with a neat backheel.

Poland 1-3 Ukraine
Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc was beaten three times, all in the first half, in Warsaw. Arsenal’s Wojciech Sczcesny was on the bench.

Moldova 0-1 Montenegro

Group I

France 3-1 Georgia
Arsenal forward Olivier Giroud broke the deadlock with a goal in first-half injury-time in the win for Didier Deschamps’ team. Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris was captain and Manchester City Gael Clichy also played the 90 minutes in Paris, while QPR’s Loic Remy and Newcastle United’s Moussa Sissoko came on in the 66th minute. Yohan Cabaye (Newcastle), Patrice Evra (Man Utd) and Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) were unused substitutes.

Spain 1-1 Finland
A Spain side featuring Manchester City’s David Silva and Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla were surprisingly held by Finland. Cazorla was replaced shortly before half-time while Chelsea’s Juan Mata came off the bench in the 76 th minute, shortly before Finland scored their equaliser. Pepe Reina (Liverpool), David De Gea (Man Utd), Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea), Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) and Javi Garcia (Man City) were on the Spain bench

For a full list of teams and tables, go to www.fifa.com

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Key Points

  • Thirteen players from the Barclays Premier League scored in World Cup qualifying in Europe
  • England had biggest margin of victory, beating San Marino 8-0
  • Many players from the same clubs faced each other
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