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Germany cruise past Kazakhstan

Germany 4-0 Kazakhstan
Miroslav Klose and Thomas Müller plundered two goals apiece as Joachim Löw's team maintained their 100% record in Group A.

Thomas Müller (right) celebrates one of his two goals with Mesut Özil
Thomas Müller (right) celebrates one of his two goals with Mesut Özil ©Getty Images

Germany strengthened their grip on Group A with their fifth win in as many UEFA EURO 2012 qualifiers as two goals apiece from FC Bayern München duo Miroslav Klose and Thomas Müller secured a comfortable 4-0 defeat of Kazakhstan.

Miroslav Beranek's charges had held out until the 48th minute before Klose's opener during their 3-0 loss to Germany in Astana last year, but the sell-out crowd in Kaiserslautern had to wait less than three minutes to watch the Bayern striker repeat the trick. Bastian Schweinsteiger curled a free-kick over from the left and Klose was lurking unmarked to tap in at the far post.

Lukas Podolski and Philipp Lahm both missed chances in a lively opening quarter-hour before the second goal arrived from another set piece, this time struck by Mesut Özil, as Müller met the Real Madrid CF midfielder's inviting cross from the right. Özil, a prominent player in this convincing win, then set up Klose, who was twice denied by David Loria's double save, before crossing for Müller to make it 3-0 two minutes ahead of the interval.

Joachim Löw's team continued to dominate in the second half but struggled to penetrate Kazakhstan's deep-lying formation, and, on the hour, they had Manuel Neuer to thank for denying Sergei Khizhnichenko. At the other end, substitute Mario Gomez came close with a volley, but it was club team-mate Klose who would score again to move level on top of the UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying scoring charts with eight goals. Toni Kroos and Sami Khedira combined well to leave the 32-year-old with the simplest of finishes.

The win takes Germany eight points clear at the top of the section, while Kazakhstan remain rooted to the foot of the table, having failed to register a single point.