Belgium and the Netherlands both cruised to 4-0 wins over Scotland and Estonia respectively in Euro 2020 qualifying on Monday (Sep 9), while Germany claimed a crucial victory over Northern Ireland in their bid to qualify for next year’s finals.
Roberto Martinez’s Belgium, the world-number-one ranked side, were not at their best but still swatted aside a poor Scotland outfit at Hampden Park to make it six wins from as many matches in Group I.
Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku gave the visitors the lead in Glasgow in only the ninth minute with his Belgian record-extending 49th international goal.
Defenders Thomas Vermaelen and Toby Alderweireld ended the game as a contest with less than 32 minutes on the clock.
Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne, who had assisted each of the first three goals, completed the scoring himself with eight minutes remaining.
“It was not a world-class performance, we just did what we had to do,” said Belgium captain De Bruyne.
“We had a tough start but after our first goal, we had more control and Scotland did not get many chances.”
Belgium, who finished third at last year’s World Cup, are now 11 points clear of third-placed Kazakhstan at the summit of their group with the top two automatically qualifying and only four games to play.
“We knew that with a win we would almost certainly qualify, and that is most important,” added De Bruyne.
Russia remain in pole position to progress from Group I with Belgium, after Mario Fernandes’ 89th-minute winner sealed a 1-0 win over Kazakhstan which moved Stanislav Cherchesov’s men eight points ahead of their beaten opponents.
Euro 2020 qualifying results:
Northern Ireland 0 Germany 2
Estonia 0 Netherlands 4
Azerbaijan 1 Croatia 1
Hungary 1 Slovakia 2
Slovenia 3 Israel 2
Poland 0 Austria 0
Latvia 0 North Macedonia 2
Scotland 0 Belgium 4
San Marino 0 Cyprus 4
Russia 1 Kazakhstan 0
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