Sports Desk, Oct 18 (EFE). – Bayern Munich striker Harry Kane struck twice as England defeated Italy 3-1 at Wembley on Tuesday to become the eighth team to qualify for next year’s European Championship in Germany.
Real Madrid star Jude Bellingham was involved in two of England’s three goals after Gianluca Scamacca gave reigning European champions Italy the lead in 15 minutes.
Bellingham played a one-two with Kane before he was fouled by Di Lorenzo around the half-hour mark, earning England a penalty.
Kane converted the penalty, his 60th goal for England, and 24th at Wembley, the most by an Englishman.
With the goal, Kane surpassed the tally of Sir Bobby Charlton’s national record of 23 goals at Wembley, lifting the mood of the around 90,000 spectators.
Twelve minutes into the second half, Bellingham recovered the ball in England’s own half and set up Marcus Rashford to complete the comeback for the home side.
With Italy pressing hard for an equalizer, Kane took advantage of a defensive error 15 minutes from time to put the game to rest.
His 61st goal for England ensured they qualified for the ninth time in the last 10 editions, with two matches in the qualifying competition in hand.
Italy, who defeated the Three Lions in the Euro 2020 final on penalties at the same ground, will now need to beat North Macedonia and Ukraine to find a ticket for Germany next summer.
England lead Group C with 16 points from six matches, while Ukraine, with 13 points, went three clear of Italy in second place after their 3-1 win over Malta, though they played a game more.
England have now joined Austria, Spain, Turkey, Scotland, France, Belgium, and Portugal, who confirmed their place in the final round of the tournament days ago, and hosts Germany.
Hungary would have qualified with a win from Group G but ended up rescuing a 2-2 draw away against Lithuania after going down 2-0 at halftime.
Dominik Szoboszlai pulled one back from the penalty spot before Barnabas Varga equalized later on after Fedor Cernych and Pijus Sirvys gave the home side the first-half lead.
The draw took Hungary’s tally to 14 points from six matches, with Serbia remaining hot on their heels, having collected 13 points after a 3-1 win over Montenegro thanks to a double from Aleksandar Mitrovic.
Slovenia beat Northern Ireland 1-0, and Denmark scrambled to a 2-1 win over San Marino to remain tied on 19 points at the top of Group H matches.
Kazakhstan beat Finland 2-1 to take their tally to 15 points, keeping the group still open with two matches for each team left.
Twenty teams will qualify for the finals in Germany through the group stage, while another three will join the hosts through the play-offs. EFE