Chelsea Players on International Duty Wrap
The Premier League and Europe's other major domestic competitions were on a brief hiatus this weekend, making way for international football as qualification for Brazil 2014 reached its final stages.
There is still one round of matches to be played this week, but some of Chelsea's stars have already made sure of their place at next summer's World Cup.
Bleacher Report brings you a comprehensive round-up of this weekend's action, outlining the fortunes for the Blues' vast array of international stars.
Germany booked their place at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil thanks to a 3-0 victory over the Republic of Ireland on Friday evening. A draw would have sufficed for Joachim Loew's side, but they ran out as comfortable winners to finish top of Group C.
Andre Schurrle was among the goalscorers in Cologne, doubling his team's lead after Sami Khedira put the Germans ahead. Mesut Ozil scored Germany's third.
Frank Lampard, Gary Cahill
England need a victory over Poland at Wembley this coming Tuesday to make sure of reaching Brazil in 2014. Roy Hodgson's team top Group H going into the final round of matches, but with Ukraine a point behind and facing whipping boys San Marino, the Three Lions know they cannot afford a slip up.
They defeated Montenegro 4-1 on Friday night with a dominant performance to leave them on the brink of World Cup qualification. Frank Lampard played the first hour of the match while Gary Cahill featured for the full 90 minutes.
England's goalscorers were Wayne Rooney, Andros Townsend and Daniel Sturridge—who fired home from the penalty spot—while Branco Boskovic also scored a goal.
Dejan Damjanovic scored a consolation for Montenegro.
Ashley Cole missed the game with a rib injury and will also sit out Tuesday's clash with Poland due to the same problem.
Belgium's talented team of youngsters will join Germany at Brazil in 2014 following their impressive victory over Group A rivals Croatia on Friday.
Two goals from Romelu Lukaku put the Belgians in control in the first half. While Niko Kranjcar scored a late goal to give the home side some hope, it wasn't enough, as Belgium held on to reach the World Cup.
Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne and Chelsea's on-loan goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois also featured.
We are in brasil baby... Good job guys thanks @RomeluLukaku9— Eden hazard (@hazardeden10) October 11, 2013
Czech Republic kept their slim hopes of reaching next summer's World Cup alive by defeating Malta 4-1 in Ta'Qali on Friday.
Denmark drew 2-2 with Group B leaders Italy while Bulgaria suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Armenia. This means, with just one point separating the Czechs, Bulgarians, Danes and Armenians, any one of four teams can reach the play-offs.
Czech Republic face Bulgaria in the final round of games on Tuesday, so they need a victory, but they also require Malta to do them a favor by at least drawing with Denmark.
Serbia were not in competitive action this weekend, but they did face Japan in a friendly in Belgrade. Branislav Ivanovic captained the team to a 2-0 victory.
Spain defeated Belarus 2-1 on Friday to move a step closer to defending their title at next summer's World Cup. Goals from Xavi and Alvaro Negredo gave the world champions victory, which means they need just one point from their final game at home to Georgia to secure their place in Brazil.
Juan Mata was an unused substitute in Mallorca.
Oscar, David Luiz, Ramires
Three of Chelsea's Samba Boys faced a long journey to Seoul for a friendly with South Korea this weekend, but it proved worth it as Brazil came away as 2-0 winners.
David Luiz was captain for Saturday's game where Neymar put Brazil ahead 1-0 shortly before halftime.
Oscar doubled the scores shortly after the interval, with Ramires appearing as a second-half substitute.
John Mikel Obi, Victor Moses
With qualification in Africa for Brazil 2014 now at the play-off stage, things are really heating up. And Chelsea's Nigerians, John Mikel Obi and Victor Moses, will be happy to have sealed a 2-1 away victory over Ethiopia on Sunday to give them the advantage heading into their second leg.
Behailu Assefa had given the home team the lead shortly before the hour mark, but a brace from Emmanuel Emenike—including a 90th-minute penalty—gave Nigeria victory, putting one foot in Brazil next summer.
The second leg will be played on Nov. 16.
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