Germany hammers San Marino 13-0

Lukas Podolski scored four goals and Germany hammered San Marino 13-0 on Wednesday, setting a scoring record in the European Championship.

updated: February 25, 2007 11:35 IST
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Serravalle, San Marino:

Lukas Podolski scored four goals and Germany hammered San Marino 13-0 on Wednesday, setting a scoring record in the European Championship. The 13 goals were the most scored in the European Championship, and the 13-goal margin was also the largest in the competition. The old record was Spain's 12-1 victory over Malta in 1983. It was also Germany's biggest away victory in its history. Miroslav Klose, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Thomas Hitzlsperger added two each for Germany, which is now 2-0 in Group D. Captain Michael Ballack, defender Manuel Friedrich and Bernd Schneider also scored. "We knew that this was the weakest team in our group and we wanted to score a lot of goals," Podolski said. San Marino, No. 191 among the 197 teams ranked by FIFA, massed its defence but was torn apart by the three-time World Cup champion, still riding high after finishing third in the latest edition at home in July. Germany's previous largest victory in a game away from home was 9-1 at Luxembourg in 1934. Germany also matched the second biggest win in its history. San Marino, which has one victory in its history, is 0-35 now in qualifying matches for European championships and the World Cup. Midfielder Tim Borowski, who had been expected to start, had to miss the game because of a groin injury, which meant Germany started with the same team that beat Ireland 1-0 in Stuttgart on Saturday. Podolski opened the scoring in the 12th minute, heading in a cross from Schneider. The Germans dominated the part-timers from San Marino but had few chances again until Schweinsteiger knocked in a pass from Marcell Jansen in the 29th. That opened the floodgates. Klose scored in the 30th, Ballack followed in the 35th - his first goal since before the World Cup on June 2 - Podolski ended a good German move by scoring his second, again off a pass by Schneider. Klose then used a perfect through ball from Ballack to make it 6-0 second before halftime. Less then two minutes into the second half, Schweinsteiger drove in a free kick from outside the penalty box. Podolski and Hitzlsperger then alternated in scoring as San Marino could not keep up with the pace of the Germans. Friedrich scored his first goal for Germany before Schneider converted a penalty in the 88th for the final goal. Goalkeeper Jens Lehmann first wanted to take the penalty but then returned to his goal and let Schneider shoot. "Our fans wanted me to shoot but I thought that it might be considered a humiliation and the San Marino players were also calling for fair-play so I went back. It was better that way," the Arsenal goalkeeper said. Germany coach Joachim Loew is now 3-0 since taking over from Juergen Klinsmann after the World Cup. (AP)