Germany tops group with 6-1 rout against Azerbaijan

Germany coach Joachim Löw said he was pleased to see his side reproduce some of its dazzling World Cup form in the 6-1 rout of Azerbaijan in Tuesday night's Euro 2012 qualifier.

Germany tops group with 6-1 rout against Azerbaijan
Photo: DPA

Having struggled to beat Belgium 1-0 in Brussels last Friday, Germany reproduced some of its form in Cologne from its strong campaign in South Africa which saw it finish third.

Striker Miroslav Klose took his tally to 55 international goals with a double on his 103rd appearance while Cologne forward Lukas Podolski answered his critics with a well-timed goal and then set up Klose in a slick display.

Germany will finish at the top of Group A, but Turkey also has a 100 percent win record after two games, having beaten Belgium 3-2 earlier in Istanbul. Germany faces Turkey in Berlin on October 8.

“The team produced some more top football and some of the combinations worked very well,” beamed Löw, who will coach Germany through to the Euro 2012 finals in the Ukraine and Poland.

“It was fun to see that. We have been working on things since even before the World Cup. You can sense that things are becoming automatic now.

“It was noted that (Lukas) Podolski was willing to put in a lot of leg work. He shows his strength in the national side and his goal ratio (41 goals in 81 games) speaks for itself.”

Interestingly, Löw said he had not seen Germany captain Michael Ballack in the Cologne stadium, as he recovers from the ankle injury which kept him out of the World Cup.

“I let him decide, everyone needs to decide for himself,” said Löw.

In Ballack’s absence, Philipp Lahm skippered the side and was pleased with the six goals, despite the second-half consolation goal by Azerbaijan striker Vagif Dzavadov.

“Six goals scored – so we can be satisfied,” said Lahm. “This team likes to play football for fun and score goals. In spite of conceding a goal, we can all be satisfied.”

Azerbaijan coach Berti Vogts said the result was acceptable, but he lamented the two late goals from centre-back Holger Badstuber and Klose as the guests’ defence capitulated.

“The result is fair. We were too passive. We conceded silly goals in injury time,” said Vogts, who is a former German national coach and guided them to the Euro 96 title.

“Germany plays in another league to us, they are a different class.”

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British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.