Six-goal Germany cruise to victory over Azerbaijan

Six-goal Germany cruise to victory over Azerbaijan

Germany made light work of Azerbaijan in running out 6-1 winners in Cologne Tuesday to keep their Euro 2012 qualifying momentum going, dpa reported.

After a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Belgium Tuesday, the Germans were never in any trouble against a team ranked 105 in the world and now lead Group A above next opponents Turkey on goal difference.

Substitute Heiko Westermann opened the scoring in the 28th minute and further resistance was broken when two more goals came just before half-time from Lukas Podolski and Miroslav Klose.

An own goal eight minutes after the break from Rashad Sadygou gave Germany a fourth, Holger Badstuber headed a fifth and Klose completed the scoring in stoppage time.

The visitors notched a consolation in the 57th minute when a corner from Vagif Javadov found its way into the net.

Germany coach Joachim Loew had preferred Wolfsburg's Sascha Riether rather then Westermann for the right-back position, with Phillip Lahm moving to the left-back position made vacant by injuries.

But Westermann came on in the 11th minute when central defender Per Mertesacker suffered a cut after being caught by Javadov's arm in an aerial clash.

The Hamburg defender then broke the deadlock when he poked the ball into the roof of the net from close range after a first attempt on goal had been blocked by keeper Kamran Agayev.

Podolski, playing at his home Cologne ground, capped a lively first half with the second in the 45th minute after a neat combination with Mesut Oezil.

With first-half stoppage time underway, Klose then struck from close range after Podolski had set him up instead of shooting himself.

Sadygou turned a Sami Khedira cross into his own net for Germany's fourth in the 53rd minute, but there was a quick reply four minutes later when Manuel Neuer under pressure at the near post failed to clear Javadov's corner which deflected over the line.

Germany continued to create chances but had to wait until the 86th minute for another goal when defender Holger Badtsuber rose unmarked to head in an Oezil corner. Klose then notched his second and Germany's sixth with the last attack of the game.

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