Bayern Munich duo Leroy Sane and Thomas Müller both scored twice as Germany ran out comfortable 9-0 winners over 10-man Liechtenstein in a FIFA World Cup qualifier in Wolfsburg.
Germany 9-0 Liechtenstein
Goals: 1-0 Gündogan (pen, 11’), 2-0 Kaufmann (og, 20’), 3-0 Sane (22’), 4-0 Reus (23’), 5-0 Sane (49’), 6-0 Müller (76’), 7-0 Baku (80’), 8-0 Müller (86’), 9-0 Göppel (og, 89’)
Red card: Hofer (9’)
Germany were awarded a penalty inside the first 10 minutes when Jens Hofer’s high boot caught Leon Goretzka in the box. The Liechtenstein defender was sent off before Ilkay Gündogan put away the spot-kick. The visitors held out another 10 minutes before a triple blow from the 2014 world champions. Daniel Kaufmann turned Freiburg captain Christian Günter’s cross into his own goal to double the hosts’ advantage in Wolfsburg. Moments later, Sane added a third when he finished off a one-touch move from Marco Reus and Goretzka. The Borussia Dortmund captain then got one himself only a minute afterwards when he put away a loose ball after the goalkeeper failed to hold a cross ahead of Sane. Liechtenstein had just one shot, from over 30 yards, in the first half but it was well off target as Manuel Neuer remained a spectator at the Volkswagen Arena.
It was five for Die Mannschaft early in the second half when Sane latched onto a ball across the box and found the bottom corner, with Müller kindly jumping over the shot to give his Bayern teammate the glory. Half-time substitute Lukas Nmecha almost had a debut goal when he struck the outside of the post. With the intensity dropping, a third Wolfsburg player joined the fray on his home ground as Maximilian Arnold earned his second cap seven years after his third. Müller then brought up the half dozen when he helped a Florian Neuhaus header over the line. The best of the night came from Germany’s other Wolf, Ridle Baku, curled one into the far top corner on his weaker left foot. Müller then got his second with minutes to go, crashing in off the underside of the bar. It was nine before the night was out when Max Göppel headed into his own net. Already assured of their place in Qatar next winter, Germany have won eight of their nine games in Group J with one left to go in Armenia on Sunday.
- Flick has won his first six games as Germany boss, surpassing his predecessor Joachim Löw's national record for the best start as Bundestrainer.
- Sane has scored six goals in his last seven games for club and country.
- Müller overtook Jürgen Klinsmann into outright sixth for most appearances with Germany (109).
- Nmecha became the 18th Wolfsburg player to earn a cap for Germany. It was the first time three Wolves had been on the pitch for the national team.
- Die Mannschaft have scored in their last 29 World Cup qualifiers.
- Germany’s record against Liechtenstein in World Cup qualifying is now four wins from four, 21 scored and none conceded.
Germany: Neuer (c) – Hofmann (Nmecha 46’), Kehrer (Ginter 72'), Rüdiger, Günter – Gündogan (Arnold 64’), Goretzka (Neuhaus 46’) - Baku, Reus, Sane (Volland 64’) - Müller
Unused subs: Leno, Trapp, Draxler, Tah, Raum, Brandt
Out: Adeyemi (not included), Gnabry (not included), Havertz (suspended), Kimmich (not included), Musiala (not included), Schlotterbeck (thigh), Süle (not included), Wirtz (hip)
Coach: Hansi Flick
Liechtenstein: B. Büchel - S. Wolfinger (Brändle 83'), Malin, Kaufmann, Hofer, Göppel - Sele (M. Büchel 83'), Frommelt, Hasler (c) – Salanovic (Grünenfelder 69’), Y. Frick (F. Wolfinger 29’ (Meier 69’))
Unused subs: Majer, Lo Russo, Kardesoglu, N. Frick, Yildiz, Spirig, Kollmann
Out: Mart. Marxer (suspended), Ospelt (knee)
Coach: Martin Stocklasa
As it happened
ANOTHER OWN GOAL
Good header from Göppel as he gets onto a Baku cross. Unfortunately it was into his own net.
OWN GOAL! 9 : 0
TWO FOR THE RAUMDEUTER
He doesn't do pretty goals but he just puts them away. A rebound comes out to the feet of the Bayern forward, he puts his boot through it. It takes a deflection off two defenders, off the underside of the bar and in.
GOAL! 8 : 0
SEVENTH HEAVEN FROM BAKU
Probably the best of the night as Baku cuts inside on his left foot and he bends one perfectly into the far top corner for his maiden international goal in his third game for Germany - and on his home ground of course!
CROSSBAR FROM VOLLAND!
The substitute wants in on the act as he turns a header from 15 yards towards goal but only onto the crossbar. Wouldn't have counted in any case as the flag went up.
A wry smile between two Bavarians as Müller pinches a goal off Neuhaus, whose header was going in after a goal-line save from a corner. The Bayern man simply wanted to leave nothing to chance as he tapped in his 41st international goal.
GOAL! 6 : 0
Liechtenstein register their second attempt of the game through Sandro Wolfinger down the right. Going wide but Neuer grabs it anyway.
A particularly loud roar goes up around the Volkswagen Arena for one of their own (in fact, their record appearance maker in the Bundesliga) as Maxi Arnold comes on for only his second senior cap - seven years after his first. It means all three Wolfsburg players in the squad are on the pitch on their home ground. There will also be no hat-trick for Sane as he's also cheered when making way for Volland.
GUNDO HITS IT
The scorer of the first has a crack from 20+ yards but it's straight at a grateful Büchel.
He's looking for that hat-trick but is twice denied by Büchel down at his right-hand post.
NMECHA OFF THE POST!
The ball bounces around the Liechtenstein box before finally sitting for Nmecha, who wraps his foot around it at waist height but is denied a debut goal by the right post.
The ball comes across from the right and Sane is able to get his shot away unchallenged. It's going for the near bottom corner, Müller has to jump over it in front of the goalkeeper. VAR checks whether he was offside but no damage done and Sane has his 11th international goal.
The Wolfsburg striker comes on for his first senior cap on his home ground.
Three minutes onto the end of the first half.
He gets the ball out of his feet and hits a sweet effort from 25 yards with no options in front of him, but it's well over the bar.
IT COUNTS AS A SHOT
Aron Sele has a go from a good 30 yards, firing well wide. Liechtenstein's first shot in the statistics.
The defender is cautioned for using his arms in going up for a header and he'll miss the final qualifier in Armenia next week.
The Bayern man gets up for a header but puts it into the ground and it bounces over. Germany have taken their foot off the gas a bit, but it's still one-way traffic.
OH, AND HIM
Manuel Neuer has come to the halfway line to get a touch of the ball. That might be his first of the game.
Sane and Germany are enjoying themselves out there, unsurprisingly.
© Alex Grimm/Getty Images
AND IT'S FOUR FROM REUS
Sane is beaten to a chipped ball by the goalkeeper but it falls kindly for Reus to put into the empty net.
Reus with the flick round the corner, Goretzka with the first time pass through the defence and into the run of Sane, who finishes across the goalkeeper for Germany's third.
2-0 FOR GERMANY
A first international assist for Freiburg captain Christian Günter as he fizzes in a low cross into the six-yard box and Daniel Kaufmann can only turn it into his own net.
OWN GOAL! 2 : 0
Now the right-back has a crack from 20 yards that's fisted away. If we're being honest, he's only been a right-back in name so far tonight, spending most of the time in the attacking third.
Sane heads a ball down, Baku takes it on his chest before a left-footed volley on the edge of the box, but it's straight at the keeper.
The Dortmund captain finds space in the box and gets the ball out of his feet to the right of goal. A powerful effort but Büchel gets a strong left hand to it.
It's Ilkay Gündogan who steps up to take, slotting the ball to the right as the goalkeeper goes the other way for his 12th international goal.
© Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
GOAL! 1 : 0
Hofer meant no malice and didn't even see Goretzka, but it's a red any day of the week and the Liechtenstein man goes over to apologise as the pair make their way off the pitch.
A very, very high boot catches Goretzka in the head in the penalty area. A clear penalty, but the Bayern man is in some pain there.
It's a 5-3-2 from the visitors who are camped on the edge of their own box with the two strikers no more than 10 yards further forward. There are a lot of bodies in the middle for Germany to have to find a way through.
You won't be shocked to hear that it's Germany who are on the ball in the opening minutes. Liechtenstein have barely had a player over the halfway line.
HOFMANN AT RIGHT-BACK
First thing to note as the teams were lining up is that it is indeed Hofmann who's at right-back, behind Baku. It could've been roles reversed based on club roles, but Hofmann has been a regular on the right of defence under Flick.
The two teams are out at the Volkswagen Arena for the anthems. The Liechtenstein anthem has caught us off guard a bit as it's called "Oben am jungen Rhein" but is set to the melody of the British anthem...
THOMAS PASSES JÜRGEN
Müller is winning his 109th cap tonight, which takes him past Jürgen Klinsmann and into outright sixth for most appearances for Germany. Next in his sights is long-time teammate Philipp Lahm (113), who turns 38 today. The remaining four ahead of him are Bastian Schweinsteiger (121), Lukas Podolski (130), Miroslav Klose (137) and Lothar Matthäus (150), who is currently pitchside in Wolfsburg talking to Joachim Löw and Hansi Flick on TV.
© Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
548 BVB APPEARANCES IN ONE PHOTO
Reus has played 332 times for Dortmund, Gündogan made 157 appearances, while Hofmann had 59 games.
© Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
© ODD ANDERSEN/AFP via Getty Images
Tonight’s game is the first involving Germany’s senior national team to be officiated by a female referee, with Croatia’s Ivana Martincic (right of picture) having been appointed by UEFA. Sanja Rodjak-Karsic (l.) is one of the assistants.
© Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
FLICK’S GOLDEN TOUCH
Hansi Flick was always seen as the natural successor to Joachim Löw, who will be honoured ahead of kick-off for his 15 years of service as national team head coach. It was Löw’s record of five wins to begin a tenure as Bundestrainer that his former assistant Flick equalled in the last international break. The man who made so much history in charge of Bayern could now do so for his country if Germany are victorious again tonight.
© Martin Rose/Getty Images
Seven wins from eight and an eight-point advantage over Romania means Germany have already secured top spot in Group J and automatic qualification for Qatar next winter. Down at the other end of the table, Liechtenstein have managed just a solitary point this campaign, drawing 1-1 away at Armenia in September. Germany have scored 23 times and conceded only three, while tonight’s opponents have conceded 23 and only scored two – one apiece from the Frick brothers.
Only four players remain from the 4-0 win in North Macedonia a month ago that saw Germany become the first team to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. They are captain Manuel Neuer, Thilo Kehrer, Thomas Müller and Leon Goretzka. It’s all change otherwise as Flick utilises Germany’s strength in depth given a number of absentees.
Majer, Lo Russo, Brändle, Grünenfelder, Kardesoglu, N. Frick, M. Büchel, Meier, Yildiz, F. Wolfinger, Spirig, Kollmann
B. Büchel - S. Wolfinger, Malin, Kaufmann, Hofer, Göppel - Sele, Frommelt, Hasler (c) - Salanovic, Y. Frick
Leno, Trapp, Ginter, Draxler, Volland, Arnold, Tah, Nmecha, Neuhaus, Raum, Brandt
Neuer (c) - Hofmann, Kehrer, Rüdiger, Günter - Gündogan, Goretzka - Baku, Reus, Sane - Müller
Welcome along to coverage Germany's 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier against Liechtenstein in Wolfsburg.