Germany rout North Macedonia 4-0 to book Qatar World Cup berth
Germany became the first team to qualify for the 2022 Qatar World Cup
Kai Havertz opened the scoring in the 50th minute
Timo Werner scored two goals in three minutes
Germany became the first country to qualify for the 2022 Qatar World Cup with a 4-0 win over North Macedonia. Chelsea attacking midfielder Kai Havertz opened the scoring in the 50th minute, with his Chelsea teammate notching two goals in three minutes to put the result beyond doubt.
Bayern Munich youngster Jamal Musiala added a fourth in the 83rd minute as 'Die Mannschaft' avenged a surprise 2-1 loss in March - the only loss in an otherwise perfect qualification campaign with seven wins from eight games.
The win also extended Germany's lead at the top of Group J to eights points with two games remaining in the qualification rounds. Coach Hansi Flick has overseen five wins since taking over from Joachim Low after the European Championships.
“We got what we wanted – to qualify as quickly as possible,” Flick said.
Iceland defeated Liechtenstein 4-0 in the other group game.
Romania moved to second in the group on 13 points, one ahead of North Macedonia and Armenia on 12. Iceland has eight points and Liechtenstein one from a draw with Armenia in September.
In Skopje, Stole Dimitrievski was called into action earlier on to deny Joshua Kimmich from a narrow angle. The Macedonian goalkeeper was to remain busy for the duration of the game with his own team relying on counterattacks.
But Germany’s lack of precision meant the game remained scoreless at the break despite 14 goal attempts in the first half.
Werner went closest before the break when he hit the left post.
Havertz finally broke the deadlock in the 50th, when Serge Gnabry sent Thomas Müller through. Müller laid the ball off for the better-placed Havertz to shoot past Dimitrievski.
Werner made it 2-0 in the 70th, then grabbed his second three minutes later. There was still time for Musiala to become Germany’s second youngest goal-scorer, aged 18 years, 227 days.
(With inputs from the Associated Press)