Featured Matches
Previous
Tottenham Hotspur
AEL
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Internazionale
Stjarnan
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 0
Game Details
Hull City
KSC Lokeren
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
FK Astra Giurgiu
Lyon
4:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Krasnodar
Real Sociedad
4:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
Lokomotiv Moscow
Apollon Limassol
3:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 1
Game Details
Metalist Kharkiv
Ruch Chorzow
4:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
Krasnodar
Real Sociedad
4:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
Omonia Nicosia
Dinamo Moscow
4:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 2
Game Details
Neftchi Baku PFC
FK Partizan Belgrade
4:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 3
Game Details
PAOK Salonika
Zimbru Chisinau
4:15 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
FK Astra Giurgiu
Lyon
4:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Rostov
Trabzonspor
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 2
Game Details
Shakhter Soligorsk
PSV Eindhoven
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
Sheriff Tiraspol
Rijeka
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
Hajduk Split
Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 2
Game Details
Twente Enschede
FK Qarabag
5:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
Maccabi Tel-Aviv
Asteras Tripolis
5:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 2
Game Details
FC Midtjylland
Panathinaikos
6:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 4
Game Details
Feyenoord Rotterdam
FC Zorya Luhansk
6:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 1
Game Details
FC Zürich
FC Spartak Trnava
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 1
Game Details
Torino
RNK Split
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
Sparta Prague
PEC Zwolle
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 1
Game Details
St Etienne
Karabükspor
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
Rapid Vienna
HJK Helsinki
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 2
Game Details
Debrecen
BSC Young Boys
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 3
Game Details
Internazionale
Stjarnan
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 0
Game Details
Hull City
KSC Lokeren
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
Borussia Monchengladbach
FK Sarajevo
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 2
Game Details
Villarreal
Astana 1964
ESPNDeportes 6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 0
Game Details
CD Nacional de Madeira
Dinamo Minsk
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 2
Game Details
Tottenham Hotspur
AEL
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Dinamo Zagreb
Petrolul Ploiesti
7:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 1
Game Details
Club Brugge
Grasshoppers Zürich
7:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Legia Warsaw
Aktobe Lento
7:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Rio Ave
Elfsborg
8:15 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 2
Game Details
Waterhouse
Tauro FC
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Olimpia
Alpha United
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Alajuelense
Chorrillo FC
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Danubio F.C.
Deportivo Capiatá
8:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 3
Game Details
Fluminense FC
Goiás EC
9:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Caracas F.C.
Inti Gas Deportes
10:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
César Vallejo
Millonarios
10:30 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Criciúma
São Paulo
11:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Sport
EC Vitória
1:00 AM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Deportivo Cali
UTC
1:00 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
Wilstermann
Peñarol
1:00 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 2
Game Details
Banfield
Tigre
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Vélez Sarsfield
Lanús
10:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Quilmes
San Lorenzo
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Gremio
Santos FC
11:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Unión Española
Universidad de Chile
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Pumas Generalena
Limon
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
Sep 1, 2011

Five-star England hammer Germany

In 2001, before the distraction of the transfer window arrived, there was some important football to played on September 1 and on the international stage England completed one of their finest ever results on this day - a 5-1 hammering of the old enemy Germany at the Olympiastadion in Munich.

In October 2000, in the last ever match at the original Wembley stadium, Germany overcame England 1-0 thanks to a Dietmar Hamman strike. The result, accompanied by such headlines as 'Wembley's sad farewell' had seen the end of Kevin Keegan as manager of the Three Lions, with his place eventually taken by Swedish boss Sven Goran Eriksson for the 2002 World Cup qualifiers.

As the first foreign manager to take over the prestigious job, Eriksson was under real pressure to perform and lead an England side to Korea/Japan, although memories of their failure to qualify for USA '94 were still fresh in their minds.

With the defeat to Germany and a 0-0 draw away at Finland (under the management of caretaker Howard Wilkinson) already behind him, Eriksson's mission began well. Despite going down 1-0 to an Aki Riihilahti goal in the return game against Finland, Michael Owen and David Beckham rescued all three points in Eriksson's debut at the helm and a 3-1 win over Albania and 2-0 win in Greece kept the Three Lions well on course for qualification.

Going into the vital game in Germany, England were six points behind their old rivals with a game in hand. But, despite the fact that the side had been unable to beat Germany on their home turf for 25 years previous, Eriksson had seemed a model of confidence ahead of the game, insisting that ''records are there to be broken.''

Germany had lost just one of their previous sixty qualification games (ahead of the 1986 FIFA World Cup) and were unbeaten at the Olympiastadion stadium since 1973. The German federation had also taken the unusual step of organising a couple of friendly fixtures on the date of the play-offs, so confident were they that qualification would be assured automatically.

And the message of confidence was apparent among the players as well. Carsten Jancker, a victim of criticism from the ever balanced English media, was unequivocal in his determination, maintaining: "We are going to win"; while German legend Franz Beckenbauer was slightly more restrained when he said: "We expect to win".

Indeed, as the instantly recognisable Pierluigi Collina blew his whistle to begin the action, the 6,000 England fans amongst a crowd of 63,000 would certainly have been forgiven for holding their breath; it was a daunting task. And, just six minutes in, and it looked like hopes of overhauling the Germans would be crushed as a neat passing move between Michael Ballack and Oliver Neuville allowed Carsten Jancker to nip in ahead of the onrushing David Seaman and open the scoring. Seaman had been called ''slow'' and ''over the hill'' by the German media and his opening contribution did little to silence the doubters.

But this would not be another England collapse. Instead, they were level as another six minutes passed. As Owen was fouled on the left hand side of the area, Beckham's free-kick was too long and hammered high back towards Gary Neville. The United defender headed back into the area as the Germans advanced and, as Nick Barmby got ahead of Oliver Kahn, Owen was there to volley home into an empty net.

Seaman and Kahn redeemed themselves somewhat, but Sebastien Deisler's horror miss from eight yards out turned the game and, before the half-time break, Steven Gerrard's hammer blow sent the Germans reeling. As Beckham's cross was headed back by Rio Ferdinand, Gerrard controlled the ball with his chest before unleashing an unstoppable 30-yard shot into the bottom corner.

England had been on the other end of a goal just before half-time in France '98 as Javier Zanetti's strike ensured that Argentina would take control of the momentum and they lost on penalties. Now the boot was on the other foot and, after the break, the Three Lions dominated.

It took just three more minutes for it to become 3-1. Another Beckham cross, followed by a knock-down from Emile Heskey this time, and Owen's volley from 12 yards crushed the Germans' already fragile confidence as it slipped through Kahn at the near post. Ballack then missed a great chance to get his side back into the game and, when Gerrard intercepted a pass to thread a through-ball to Owen, few expected him to miss.

He didn't. And as the ball rippled the top of the net for the fourth, Owen became the first England player to hit a hat-trick against Germany since Sir Geoff Hurst's World Cup winning treble in 1966.

But England weren't done yet and another penetrating Beckham pass found Paul Scholes who squared for Heskey to get himself on the scoresheet and complete the rout, 5-1. Almost immediately, hundreds of German fans streamed out of the Olympic Stadium, disenchanted by a performance that had seen them concede more than a tenth of all the goals they had ever conceded in World Cup qualifiers.

After the game, Eriksson was left rubbing his eyes too. "I can't believe that we can beat Germany 5-1 away, it seems like a dream, it's unbelievable,'' he said. ''I said to the players: 'I don't know what to say to you.' I told them before the game, if you play football as you can play we can beat any team, even Germany away. But I can't believe it was 5-1.''

While Beckenbauer paid tribute to England's 'fantasy football' and their star performer Owen. "I have never seen a better England team and I have never seen an England team playing better football. They had pace, aggression, movement and skill. It was fantasy football,'' he said. ''When they scored their third goal they started to play football that would have beaten anyone in the world. Michael Owen was simply unstoppable. Our defenders were slow and they just could not handle his pace, while his finishing was unbelievable.''

Owen's ascension to the peak of his powers was complete, and he would win the Ballon D'Or at the end of 2001. And although everything would never go quite so right as it had that night in Munich, Eriksson's place in English football history was assured.

What happened next? England beat Albania in their next game to go level with Germany at the top of the group. However, their last match proved even more exciting as they twice came from behind against Greece to seal a 2-2 draw, with Beckham's last-minute free-kick one of England's most memorable images. England finished top of the group as Germany could only draw against Finland and went to Korea/Japan in high spirits. Germany made the finals as well after beating Ukraine in a play-off but in the main competition England went out to a Ronaldinho free-kick in the quarter-finals, while Germany went on to lose to Brazil in the final.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.