FIFA WCQ, wins for Germany and Spain: Records broken
Germany's COVID-19 affected side beat 10-man Liechtenstein 9-0 to continue their ruthless form in the ongoing FIFA World Cup Qualifiers. The Germans had earlier booked their ticket for the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar last month. They are flying high in Group J with 24 points. Meanwhile, Spain edged past Greece 1-0 and need a solitary point to finish as Group B winners.
Why does this story matter?
Germany have played a ruthless brand of football, winning eight of their nine matches. They have been prolific in front of goal, scoring 32 times, besides conceding just thrice. Hansi Flick's side became the first European team to qualify last month. On the other hand, Spain enjoyed a massive win and are in control of Group B. A point is what they need next.
Germany put nine past Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein were down to 10 men inside the first 10 minutes. Jens Hofer was shown a direct red card for kicking Leon Goretzka with a high challenge in the face. Post that, IIkay Gundogan converted a penalty before the Germans strolled past the visitors. Thomas Muller and Leroy Sane scored a brace each. Ridle Baku and Marco Reus scored as well.
Hansi Flick scripts history for Germany
Former Bayern Munich manager Hansi Flick has become the first manager to win his first six games in charge of the German national team. As per Opta, Germany have scored a staggering 27 goals in the first six games under Flick. This is more than in the first six matches under any other manager in their history.
Record for Flick!
Muller equals Ballack's tally
The veteran Muller was impressive for Germany, scoring twice. He has now raced to 42 international goals, matching the tally of former German mid-fielder Michael Ballack (42).
Spain need a point to qualify
Spain beat Greece 1-0 in a crucial Group B encounter with Pablo Sarabia netting a penalty. The Euro 2020 semi-finalists need a point from their final group game against Sweden to make it to next year's event. Spain manager Luis Enrique said Spain are in a good situation and deserved victory. He praised his players for their attitude and ambition.
Sarabia ends Spain's penalty woes
As per Opta, excluding shootouts, Sarabia has converted the first penalty for Spain since September 2020. La Roja had missed the previous five (2 by Sergio Ramos vs Switzerland, Ruiz vs Lithuania, Gerard Moreno vs Poland and Alvaro Morata vs Slovakia), ending their worst run in the 21st century. He also netted Spain's first penalty in WCQ since Juan Mata in 2009 (vs Armenia).