Sandro Wagner Leads Germany Past San Marino in 2018 World Cup Qualifier

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJune 10, 2017

Germany's midfielder Julian Draxler (R) celebrates scoring the opening goal with his teammates (L-R) midfielder Emre Can,  midfielder Sandro Wagner, midfielder Julian Brandt and  defender Joshua Kimmich during the FIFA World Cup 2018 qualification football match between Germany and San Marino in Nuremberg, southern Germany, on June 10, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Christof STACHE        (Photo credit should read CHRISTOF STACHE/AFP/Getty Images)
CHRISTOF STACHE/Getty Images

World champions Germany predictably beat San Marino during Saturday's 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier, winning 7-0 in Nuremberg.

Sandro Wagner scored a hat-trick, while Julian Draxler, Julian Brandt, Shkodran Mustafi and Amin Younes also scored.

Oliver Moody of DW News shared the teams' lineups: 

San Marino didn't hide their intentions early, pulling back with all players and tackling any opponents who ventured near the box with the ball. Emre Can fired the first chance of the match on goal from a resulting free-kick, missing high.

Goalkeeper Elia Benedettini knew he was in for a rough night, but he stopped the first effort he saw convincingly, denying Leon Goretzka. Brandt also went close before Draxler broke the deadlock after just 11 minutes.

The visitors failed to clear a routine ball, and the Paris Saint-Germain man took the gift and turned it into a goal.

San Marino's now-infamous Twitter account was on point:

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Just five minutes later, Wagner added his first international goal, cleverly leaving his man before guiding home a header.

Per football analyst Clark Whitney, it had been a long time coming:

he two-goal lead saw Die Mannschaft take their foot off the gas a bit, although they kept creating chances and scored two more goals before half-time. The first came courtesy of a defensive blunder, which allowed Wagner to add to his tally.

Younes joined in on the fun shortly before half-time, thanks to even more dreadful defending. More from San Marino's account:

Two minutes into the second half, Arsenal star Shkodran Mustafi joined the party, pushing home a loose ball to make it 5-0.

But after that setback, the visitors clamped down, holding steady as Germany made several substitutions. 

It took until the 69th minute for the Germans to score again, and it was Brandt who deservedly added his name to the scoresheet and the list of first-time scorers.

Timo Werner claimed a late penalty before Wagner completed his hat-trick, to the delight of FC Bayern English:

The win leaves Germany five points ahead of Northern Ireland in Group A.