London, October 14:
Germany became the first team to qualify for the European Championship with a 0-0 draw at Ireland, and Scotland made things a lot tougher for both Italy and France to follow.
Scotland beat Ukraine 3-1 to retain first place in Group B and increase the likelihood that one of the two World Cup finalists will be missing from next year’s tournament in Austria and Switzerland.
France defeated the Faeroe Islands 6-0, but the team is still two points behind Scotland, who have 24 points. Italy have 23 after beating Georgia 2-0.
England, Spain, Portugal, Sweden and defen-ding champions Greece also won, while the Netherlands got beaten at Romania.
Thierry Henry, who scored one of France’s six goals at the Faeroe Islands, tied Michel Platini’s national record with 41 goals. Karim Benzema scored two goals, while Nicolas Anelka, Jerome Rothen and Hatem Ben Arfa added the others for France.
Italy won with goals from Andrea Pirlo and Fabio Grosso. England won their fifth consecutive qualifier 3-0 beating Estonia. Shaun Wright-Phillips and Wayne Rooney scored a goal each, and Taavi Rahn added an own-goal.