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Germany and Portugal avoid upsets

Published: Tuesday 18 October 2005, 12.53CET
Free-scoring Germany and Portugal made short work of claiming the top two places in qualifying Group 5 to reach the Elite round.
Published: Tuesday 18 October 2005, 12.53CET

Germany and Portugal avoid upsets

Free-scoring Germany and Portugal made short work of claiming the top two places in qualifying Group 5 to reach the Elite round.

Germany and Portugal made short work of claiming the top two places in UEFA European Under-17 Championship qualifying Group 5, as the Faroe Islands and San Marino found life tough against their formidable opponents.

Easing to victory
After the first day the pattern of the section was already clear. Mini-tournament hosts Portugal, winners of one U17 and four U16 Championships, overcame San Marino 5-0 in Figeira da Foz. Romeu Ribeiro, Ricardo Fernandes and Bruno Matias scored in the first 16 minutes and André Carvalhas added two in the second period, when Achille Della Valle was sent off for San Marino. Over in Touriz, Germany defeated the Faroese 4-0, Marko Marin, Toni Kroos and Alexander Neumann striking before the break and substitute Manuel Fischer adding the fourth ten minutes before the final whistle.

Four for Bruno Matias
Two days later, the two berths in the Elite round draw were filled. Portugal repeated Germany's scoreline against the Faroes in Tabua, Bruno Matias scoring a hat-trick within 24 minutes before scoring his, and his country's fourth goal eight minutes into the second half.

Germany strike ten
Germany were even more impressive, striking ten without replay against San Marino in Soure. It was only 2-0 at the break, Björn Kopplin and Kevin Pezzoni scoring in the final six minutes of the opening period. But seven minutes into the second half Christopher Schorch had scored twice, either side of a Fischer goal. Then, after San Marino's Andrea Venerucci was sent off for a second bookable offence, there was still plenty of time for Kopplin to register again, Fischer to complete a hat-trick, Alexander Neumann to get on the scoresheet and the luckless Maicol Beretti to bring up double figures with an own goal in added time.

Entertaining draw
The two minnows were now out, but did produce an entertaining encounter for third place in Figueira de Foz. San Marino needed to win to pip their rivals, and took a seventh-minute lead through a happier Berretti only for Henning Joensen to level nine minutes later. Goals from Alessandro Bianchi and Matteo Vitaioli after the half-hour gave the Sammarinese a 3-1 half-time advantage, but Klæmint Olsen pulled one back in the 48th minute, and then just when it seemed the Faroes were destined to finish bottom he struck again in added time to secure a 3-3 draw

Top place sealed
In Coimbra, Germany needed only a draw to pip Portugal to first place. As it was, though, Bernd Stöber's side won 2-0, Kroos converting a 28th-minute penalty and substitute Deniz Naki on target just before the hour. In the Elite round both qualifiers will hope for better fortune than last season - Germany and Portugal were pipped by late goals for the Netherlands and Croatia respectively to miss out on a place in the finals.

Last updated: 21/10/05 15.58CET

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