World Cup Qualifiers | Poland, England qualify, Scotland's World Cup dreams ended

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World Cup Qualifiers | Poland, England qualify, Scotland's World Cup dreams ended

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SportsCafe Desk

10/09/2017

Poland sealed their first World Cup spot since the 2006 tournament thanks to Robert Lewandowski excellent goal against Montenegro on Sunday. Scotland blew their last chance to remain in contention for a World Cup place meanwhile England ended their qualifying campaign with a 1-0 win in Lithuania.

Poland 4 – 2 Montenegro

Poland became the last team to confirm a place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia as they registered a convincing 4-2 victory against Montenegro in a Group E match. Krzysztof Maczynksi opened the goal tally for Poland and Kamil Grosicki doubled the advantage just ten minutes later. Montenegro failed to score in the first half of the game but they scored twice in quick succession to level proceedings. As as a substitute, Stefan Mugosa found the net before Zarko Tomasevic grabbed an 83rd-minute equaliser for the visitors.

A draw would have easily sufficed Poland's qualification for the 2018 finals but Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski put his side back in front on 85 minutes. Two minutes later, Filip Stojkovic increased the margin of the score beyond any doubt. 

Slovenia 2 – 2 Scotland

Slovenia and Scotland played a dramatic 2-2 draw in Ljubljana on Sunday as both teams failed to book a place in the World Cup finals. Scotland needed a victory to guarantee second place in Group F and a spot in the playoffs for the remaining World Cup berths and Celtic's Leigh Griffiths had given them hope in the first-half with an early lead. But Roman Bezjak netted twice for Slovenia in the second half of the game leaving Scotland on the brink. With just three minutes left, Robert Snodgrass set notched up a dramatic late equaliser.  The draw meant Scotland could only finish third in the group on 18 points lagging behind Slovakia on goal difference and three points ahead of Slovenia.

Lithuania 0 – 1 England

England ensured that they end their World Cup qualification journey unbeaten, as they registered another slim victory over Lithuania. It was another poor performance by them, which was rescued by Harry Kane's first-half penalty.

Manager Gareth Southgate gave debuts to Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Winks and Leicester City defender Harry Maguire. Apart from it, the three Lions also experimented with a three-man central defence with a place in Russia already confirmed by Thursday's win against Slovenia at Wembley.

England got the penalty in the 27th minute and Kane did no mistake as his clinical take saw the ball fly low, hard and right into the left-hand corner. Despite guessing the right way, Lithuania goalie Ernestas Setkus went the right way, he had no chance. The striker became the first player to score for England in his first four games as captain in the process. 

Other Results:

Kazakhstan 1 – 1 Armenia

Germany 5 – 1 Azerbaijan

Czech Republic 5 – 0 San Marino

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