Gareth Southgate praised England’s “really good year” after his side thrashed San Marino 10-0 in their final 2022 World Cup qualifier.
— England (@England) November 15, 2021
Gareth Southgate said England’s mindset was important to the record-breaking qualifying for the World Cup after Harry Kane scored four goals in a 10-0 thrashing of San Marino on Monday.
Needing a draw in their last Group I qualifier to qualify for next year’s tournament in Qatar, England scored 10 goals in a single game for the first time since a friendly against the US in 1964. The victory was the Three Lions’ largest in a competitive match to date.
Southgate’s team took the lead early on to Harry Maguire before Filippo Fabbri’s own goal doubled the lead.
After that, England captain Harry Kane grabbed centre stage, scoring four goals before the break to rewrite the record books.
Emile Smith Rowe, an Arsenal midfielder, scored his first senior international goal in his first start.
After Dante Rossi of San Marino was sent off, Tyrone Mings headed his first England goal, before Tammy Abraham and Bukayo Saka secured their country’s record-breaking victory.
Kane made a calendar year record for England by scoring 16 goals in 2021, surpassing George Hilsdon’s 12-goal tally in 1908 and Dixie Dean’s 12-goal tally in 1927.
Just Bobby Charlton (49) and Wayne Rooney (53) are ahead of the 28-year-old on 48 England goals, with only Gary Lineker (49) and Wayne Rooney (53) ahead of him.
“Harry is a brilliant goal scorer. He may have got it (the record) if we had left him on for another half-hour “According to Southgate.
“We would have received calls from Wayne Rooney’s family telling us to get him off!”
Winners from each group In their ten matches in qualifying, England went unbeaten.
— England (@England) November 15, 2021
In 2021, they have won more games (15), scored more goals (52), and maintained more clean sheets (14) than in any previous calendar year.
“I’ve got to praise all of our players and staff on a very successful year,” Southgate said. “The qualification was earned away in Budapest, Warsaw, Albania, and I’ve got to credit all of our players and staff on a really good year.”
“Even in a game like tonight, we can’t even control the opposition’s level of play, but the way we played was amazing.”
After reaching the Euro 2020 final in July, Southgate’s side completed a spectacular 2021 on a fitting high note, missing out on a first title since 1966 in a bitter penalty shoot-out against Italy.
In a year’s time, they’ll be one of the leading candidates for the World Cup in Qatar.
“This is an excellent time to reflect,” Southgate remarked. “This is an excellent time for us to reflect on the last few months, the younger players, and the experiences they may require in the six or seven months leading up to the World Cup.”
In the sixth minute, England took the lead against a dismal San Marino side that is now ranked worst in FIFA’s world rankings.
Maguire rose highest to score with a powerful header from Phil Foden’s corner, making it two goals in two games for the defender.
In the 15th minute, Maguire’s pass found Saka cutting in from the left side of the San Marino area and drilling a low shot that deflected in off Fabbri’s outstretched boot.
Kane scored a penalty in the 27th minute after Rossi raised his hand to get the tiniest of touches on Foden’s scissor kick.
In the 31st minute, Kane scored his second goal, guiding Smith Rowe’s cross into the bottom corner.
Alessandro D’Addario’s arm obstructed Kane’s header eight minutes later, and he smashed the ensuing spot-kick high into the top corner for his second treble in two games.
Kane got his fourth goal in the 42nd minute, weaving his way past a sloppy San Marino defence and slotting home.
In the 58th minute, Smith Rowe scored the seventh goal with a predatory finish.
Mings scored in the 69th minute after Rossi was sent off for tripping Conor Gallagher.
With England fans roaring “we want 10,” Abraham made it nine in the 78th minute, and Saka obliged 60 seconds later with a close-range header.