BBC Home
Explore the BBC



Last Updated: Sunday March 29 2009 11:13 GMT

World Cup qualifying win for NI

Northern Ireland players celebrate a goal

Northern Ireland are top of their 2010 World Cup qualifying group, after a hard-fought 3-2 home win over Poland.

Warren Feeney, Jonny Evans and an own goal gave Northern Ireland the victory, although a late goal for Poland made it a tense finish for the home fans.

That goal from Marek Saganowski came in injury time, but couldn't stop Northern Ireland topping Group Three.

The day wasn't so good for Scottish fans, as their team lost 3-0 away to the Netherlands.

Scotland made a bright start to the match, but didn't take an early chance when Kenny Miller was tackled inside the penalty area.

Scotland concede a goal
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar opens the scoring for the Netherlands

That miss cost Scotland dear, as the Netherlands hit back with goals from Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Robin van Persie.

Scotland then had a goal disallowed by the referee which seemed a harsh decision, before Dirk Kuyt added the third goal from the penalty spot.

Earlier on Saturday Wales lost a crucial match too, going down 2-0 at home to Poland.

The defeat will make it very difficult for the team to qualify for the tournament in South Africa.

The Republic of Ireland missed a good chance to earn a crucial qualifying win when they could only draw 1-1 at home to Bulgaria.

Big win for England

Richard Dunne scored the opening goal less than a minute into the match for Ireland, but a Kevin Kilbane own goal meant the teams shared the points.

Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney scores for England

England were also in action, and enjoyed a thumping 4-0 win at Wembley in a friendly match with Slovakia.

Emile Heskey, Frank Lampard and Wayne Rooney - with two goals - were all on target for England, but three strikers picked up injuries.

Heskey, Carlton Cole and Peter Crouch all had to limp out of the match, that also saw David Beckham win his 109th cap for England.