Harry Kane made history as England booked their place at the 2022 World Cup with a dominant 10-0 qualifying victory over San Marino, who finished with 10 men on Monday.
England only needed a point to be guaranteed of finishing top of Group I and booking their place in Qatar, but a win never looked in doubt, with Harry Maguire’s header and Filippo Fabbri’s own goal preceding a four-goal salvo from Kane.
The Tottenham striker became the first England player to score more than 12 goals in a calendar year with the first of two penalties, and by the end of the half he had gone from matching Jimmy Greaves’ 44 international goals to drawing level with Gary Lineker (48) in third on the Three Lions’ all-time scoring list.
Emile Smith Rowe marked his full debut with a goal before Dante Rossi saw red for San Marino, with Tyrone Mings, Tammy Abraham and Bukayo Saka compounding San Marino’s misery in a non-competitive game.
Maguire scored the opening goal for the second game running when he headed Phil Foden’s corner home, and in the 15th minute Saka’s scuffed shot was inadvertently poked inside the near post by Fabbri.
Kane converted from the penalty spot after referee Rade Obrenovic penalised Rossi for handling Foden’s acrobatic effort in the box, and the Tottenham striker doubled his tally with a volley from Smith Rowe’s delivery.
Kane completed a 12-minute hat-trick by drilling another spot-kick – awarded after Alessandro D’Addario handled his header – into the top-left corner, and he made it four before half-time with a cool finish at the end of a mazy run.
— England (@England) November 15, 2021
Abraham was sent on as one of three half-time substitutes and teed up Smith Rowe in the 57th minute, with Mings looping a first England goal home after Rossi was shown a second yellow card for tripping debutant Conor Gallagher.
Jude Bellingham had a maiden England strike of his own chalked off following a VAR review two minutes later, but Abraham steered in a majestic half-volley and Saka nodded in a 10th to complete the scoring in the 79th minute.
What does it mean? Records tumble for Kane and England
The new record for England goals in a calendar year now stands at 16 after Kane moved clear of George Hilsdon (in 1908) and Dixie Dean (in 1927) with a clinical first-half display.
He became just the fourth player to hit a hat-trick in consecutive Three Lions appearances and the first to score four goals in a single game since Ian Wright in November 1993 – also against San Marino.
England racked up six in the first half for the first time since an 8-2 win over Netherlands in 1946 and finished with 10 for the first time since beating the United States by the same scoreline in 1964.
Southgate brings in more fresh blood
By handing Aaron Ramsdale and Gallagher their first England caps against San Marino, Gareth Southgate has now given 50 players their senior international debut. The last Three Lions manager to do that was Bobby Robson (64).
Smith Rowe at home
Smith Rowe became the first Arsenal player to score on his first start for England since Paul Merson in March 1992. He was also the 18th different England goalscorer in 2021, and Mings made it 19 – the most the Three Lions have ever had in a single calendar year.
Key Opta Facts
– England have qualified for their seventh consecutive World Cup, their longest ever run of reaching successive finals tournaments.
– The Three Lions’ 39 goals are their most ever scored in a World Cup/European Championship qualifying campaign.
– This was England’s biggest ever win in a competitive away match in their history.
– The last three occasions of a player scoring four goals in a game for England have been against San Marino – David Platt in February 1993, Ian Wright in November 1993 and Kane on Monday.
– Kane has scored more goals than any other European player in qualifying for the 2022 World Cup (12).
There is nothing in the schedule for either team in the next international break, though the focus will be friendly matches to build up to the World Cup.