Gnabry scores hat-trick on debut as Germany thrash San Marino
World Cup qualifying, Stadio Olimpico - San Marino 0 Germany 8 (Khedira 8, Gnabry 9, 58, 76, Hector 32, 65, Stefanelli OG 82, Volland 85)
Serge Gnabry scored a hat-trick on his debut as Germany recorded an 8-0 victory over minnows San Marino at the Stadio Olimpico in Group C.
The 21-year-old was handed his first international appearance having impressed for Werder Bremen this season and he grabbed a goal after only nine minutes, two minutes after stand-in captain Sami Khedira opened the scoring. Jonas Hector grabbed the final goal of the first-half on 32 minutes.
Joachim Low’s side upped the ante after the restart and added a further five goals in the second-half.
Gnabry added the fourth after 58 minutes with Hector further extending the lead with his brace on 65 minutes.
The best goal of the match came on 76 minutes when Gnabry sealed his hat-trick with a fine first-time effort.
To make matters worse, Mattia Stefanelli scored an own goal as Germany pushed for double figures. They didn’t quite manage 10 goals but they did score eight, Kevin Volland completing the rout with his first international goal on 85 minutes.
It means Germany remain top of Group C, five points above second with a +16 healthy goal difference. San Marino are bottom and have conceded 17 goals in four games.
Beginners luck: Let’s be honest, Joachim Low won’t learn too much about his squad when playing San Marino. What he will be pleased with however is the performance of his debutant players. Serge Gnabry looks a star in the making and Arsene Wenger may well regret selling him. Benjamin Henrichs was also fantastic at full-back.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Serge Gnabry (Germany): A fantastic showing from a youngster who should have a great international career. His stunning third goal typified his performance - class and composure.
San Marino: A. Simoncini 7, Berardi 4, F. Vitaioli 4, Simoncini 4, Brolli 4, Palazzi 4; F. Berardi 4, Domeniconi 4, Tosi 5, M. Vitaioli 4; Stefanelli 5. Subs: Brolli N/A, Hirsch N/A, Domeniconi 5.
7’ – GOAL: San Marino 0-1 Germany! It takes fewer than seven minutes for Germany to break the deadlock. Khedira is played through, stays onside, rounds the goalkeeper and applies the finish.
9’ – GOAL: San Marino 0-2 Germany! A goal for the debutant. San Marino fail to clear their lines, and Gnabry is presented with a simple finish. Too easy.
20’ – SAN MARINO CHANCE! A corner is played to the near post, Tosi flicks the ball on but it loops over the top of the goal. Sloppy defending from Germany...
32’ – GOAL: San Marino 0-3 Germany! Having gone over 20 minutes without a goal, Germany finally grab their third. It's a neat goal too. Gotze feeds a pass through to Hector who makes no mistake as he slides the ball into the bottom corner.
58’ – GOAL: San Marino 0-4 Germany! It's a perfect debut for Gnabry who grabs a fourth for Germany and his second of the evening. A cross is delivered into the penalty area where the midfielder finds himself all alone and he sends a volley into the bottom corner.
65’ – GOAL: San Marino 0-5 Germany! Hector scores a fifth for Germany - with a nutmeg! A wry smile from the San Marino goalkeeper who must be embarrassed after conceding such a goal to a defender.
76’ - HAT-TRICK: San Marino 0-6 Germany! Gnabry scores a treble on his debut! It's the best of the lot as he times his run to perfection to meet Muller's cross and slides a first-time effort beyond the home goalkeeper.
82’ – OWN GOAL: San Marino 0-7 Germany! Germany have their seventh. Volland plays a pass across the face of goal and Stefanelli somehow puts it into his own net.
85’ – GOAL: San Marino 0-8 Germany! Volland scores his first goal for his country on his ninth cap with a neat turn and shot into the bottom corner.
- Serge Gnabry is the first player to score in his first appearance for Germany since Christian Pander (August 2007).
- Benjamin Henrichs is the 14th player of Bayer Leverkusen to make his debut for Germany with Joachim Low as coach - the most for one club.
- Mario Gotze made his 61st appearance for Germany - the same amount as Jens Lehmann and Fritz Walter.