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Spain wins WC qualifiers by 4-0 margins


11-13-2016 13:01 BJT

Qualifying for the 2018 World Cup. Group G leaders Spain would be at home to Macedonia looking to keep their place atop the standings in tact. And La Furia Roja could ill-afford a slip-up with Italy right on their tails, sitting in second in the pool -- only on goal difference.

The home side, however, are almost beaten early on, following a corner from the Macedonians. Daniel Mojsov beats the offisde trap for a close range header. David de Gea makes a reflex save and keeps it nil-nil. The Manchester United keeper not panicking and makes a great stop.

Spain take the lead in the 34th minute, thanks to an own goal from Darko Velkovski. The defender is trying to clear Dani Carvajal's cross over the bar. But instead he nods into the top corner of his own net. 1-nil Spain.

The hosts double the advantage in the 63rd. After a string of passes on the left flank, David Silva's cross is deflected onto the path of Vitolo. The Sevilla winger heads into the net to make it 2-nil.

And the boys in red would once again work the ball around -- breaking down the Macedonian defence in the 84th minute. Carvajal finds Nacho Monreal who is left open inside the area. The Arsenal left back slots into the bottom corner. It's a delightful volley and it's a 3-0 cushion for Spain.

Just a moment later, Aritz Aduriz nets the fourth goal for the home side. Spain rout Macedonia 4-0 to remain top of Group G.

Azzurri trail Group G leaders Spain on goal difference

Italy would need a win to stay neck and neck with the Spainiards in the pool, and would be on the road facing Liechtenstein. The Azzurri get off to a quick start Andrea Belotti turns in from close range in the 11th minute. The striker left unmarked in front of goal.

The Torino striker turns supplier one minute later by heading a long pass into the path of Ciro Immobile. The latter, slotting his shot into the back of the net. It's 2-0.

The visitors slice their way through the defence again in the 32nd. Mattia De Sciglio gets to the byline and keeps the ball in play and pulls it back for Antonio Candreva to tap it home. 3-nil.

Giampiero Ventura's men would seal the victory in the first half, and it's Belotti again netting a minute before halftime. staying onside and firing it between the keeper's legs Italy stay on 10 points in the group, only behind Spain on goal difference.

Also in Group G, Israel was a 3-nil winner at Albania. Israel a point behind Spain and Italy after four matches. In Group D, Ireland edged Austria 1-0. Wales drew 1-1 against Serbia. Ireland stay on top with 10 points, two ahead of Serbia and four in front of Wales. In Group I, Croatia beat Iceland 2-0 to climb to top of the pool with 10 points. Ukraine are two points behind after beating Finland 1-0.

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