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Oct 11, 2013

Belgium kickstart World Cup party, nine-man Bulgaria lose

LONDON (Reuters) – Two-goal Romelu Lukaku fired Belgium into next year’s World Cup finals as their golden generation sealed a return to the global showpiece on Friday for the first time since 2002.

A 2-1 win away to Croatia ensures unbeaten Belgium will finish top of Group A and they became the third European team to secure a place in Brazil after Netherlands and Italy.

Oct 11, 2013

Soccer-Belgium kickstart World Cup party, nine-man Bulgaria lose

LONDON, Oct 11 (Reuters) – Two-goal Romelu Lukaku fired Belgium into next year’s World Cup finals as their golden generation sealed a return to the global showpiece on Friday for the first time since 2002.

A 2-1 win away to Croatia ensures unbeaten Belgium will finish top of Group A and they became the third European team to secure a place in Brazil after Netherlands and Italy.

Oct 10, 2013

Red-hot Sturridge can be England sharpshooter, says Gerrard

WATFORD, England (Reuters) – Fit-again striker Daniel Sturridge can fire England into the World Cup finals if he replicates his blistering domestic form at international level, England captain and Liverpool team mate Steven Gerrard said.

Sturridge missed last month’s qualifiers against Moldova and Ukraine with a thigh injury but is expected to start alongside Wayne Rooney, who is also available again after injury, when England face Montenegro at Wembley on Friday.

Oct 10, 2013

Soccer-Red-hot Sturridge can be England sharpshooter, says Gerrard

WATFORD, England, Oct 10 (Reuters) – Fit-again striker Daniel Sturridge can fire England into the World Cup finals if he replicates his blistering domestic form at international level, England captain and Liverpool team mate Steven Gerrard said.

Sturridge missed last month’s qualifiers against Moldova and Ukraine with a thigh injury but is expected to start alongside Wayne Rooney, who is also available again after injury, when England face Montenegro at Wembley on Friday.

Oct 10, 2013

Don’t castigate Wilshere for expressing opinion – Hodgson

WATFORD, England (Reuters) – Footballers who speak their mind should be welcomed, not frowned upon, England manager Roy Hodgson said on Thursday in backing under-fire midfielder Jack Wilshere.

The Arsenal and England player caused a furore when he waded into the debate over Manchester United teenager Adnan Januzaj’s future eligibility for the England team by stating only English people should be selected.

Oct 10, 2013

Soccer-Don’t castigate Wilshere for expressing opinion – Hodgson

WATFORD, England, Oct 10 (Reuters) – Footballers who speak their mind should be welcomed, not frowned upon, England manager Roy Hodgson said on Thursday in backing under-fire midfielder Jack Wilshere.

The Arsenal and England player caused a furore when he waded into the debate over Manchester United teenager Adnan Januzaj’s future eligibility for the England team by stating only English people should be selected.

Oct 10, 2013

Hodgson backs England to get it right on the night

WATFORD, England (Reuters) – England will show their true colours and put behind them an unconvincing World Cup qualifying campaign by winning their final two games to secure a place in next year’s finals, manager Roy Hodgson said on Thursday.

Victories over Montenegro at Wembley on Friday and Poland four days later would guarantee automatic qualification for Brazil.

Oct 10, 2013

Soccer-Hodgson backs England to get it right on the night

WATFORD, England, Oct 10 (Reuters) – England will show their true colours and put behind them an unconvincing World Cup qualifying campaign by winning their final two games to secure a place in next year’s finals, manager Roy Hodgson said on Thursday.

Victories over Montenegro at Wembley on Friday and Poland four days later would guarantee automatic qualification for Brazil.

Oct 2, 2013

Bayern crush City, Ronaldo at the double for Real

LONDON (Reuters) – Holders Bayern Munich left Champions League aspirants Manchester City chasing shadows with a 3-1 win on Wednesday to serve notice Pep Guardiola will leave no stone unturned to re-establish their continental dominance.

Franck Ribery, Thomas Mueller and Arjen Robben scored as Bayern left shellshocked City chasing shadows for much of a one-sided Group D encounter that ended the Premier League team’s five-year unbeaten run at home in Europe.

Oct 2, 2013

Soccer-Bayern crush City, Ronaldo at the double for Real

LONDON, Oct 2 (Reuters) – Holders Bayern Munich left Champions League aspirants Manchester City chasing shadows with a 3-1 win on Wednesday to serve notice Pep Guardiola will leave no stone unturned to re-establish their continental dominance.

Franck Ribery, Thomas Mueller and Arjen Robben scored as Bayern left shellshocked City chasing shadows for much of a one-sided Group D encounter that ended the Premier League team’s five-year unbeaten run at home in Europe.