San Marino 0-6 England: Wayne Rooney equals Sir Bobby Charlton's record in rout
Last Updated: 06/09/15 7:21am
Wayne Rooney equalled Sir Bobby Charlton's record with his 49th goal for England as they secured their qualification to Euro 2016 with a 6-0 thrashing of Group E minnows San Marino.
The striker, who needed two to go ahead of Charlton, converted England's opener from the penalty spot, but he was made to wait for his 50th goal as he was substituted early in the second half.
Cristian Brolli diverted Luke Shaw's cross into his own net for England's second on the half-hour mark, before Ross Barkley netted his first Three Lions goal straight after half-time.
Rooney was replaced by Harry Kane in the 58th minute but England added three more goals after that, with substitute Theo Walcott netting a double either side of a superb Kane strike.
The result sealed England's qualification with three games to spare as they maintained a perfect record at the top of Group E.
Rooney looked destined for an historic night after he broke the deadlock after 13 minutes in San Marino's tiny Stadio Olimpico.
The penalty came in confusing circumstances as referee Leontios Trattou initially appeared to have awarded San Marino a free kick following a coming together in the goalmouth.
But Rooney made no mistake from 12 yards as he sent San Marino goalkeeper Aldo Simoncini the wrong way. The Manchester United striker was mobbed by his team-mates and pointed to the sky in celebration, and even the home fans applauded the goal.
England's total dominance continued throughout the first half, but they created few chances on the poor playing surface. Indeed, when they did get their second, it came courtesy of San Marino defender Brolli, who headed Shaw's whipped cross beyond Simoncini at his near post.
England almost added a third just before the break, but Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's close-range effort was somehow tipped over the bar by Simoncini following a defensive mix-up.
After the break, however, it only took seconds for England to get their third. The lively Oxlade-Chamberlain was the provider, crossing for Barkley to head home his first goal in an England shirt.
Rooney's substitution in the 58th minute was met with surprise around the stadium, but Hodgson was eager to give Kane a chance, and it wasn't long before England had their fourth.
San Marino were becoming increasingly tired, and Walcott scored with his first touch seconds after coming on in the 67th minute. The goal came after Shaw and Jamie Vardy combined to release substitute Fabian Delph, whose low cross was tapped in at the far post by the Arsenal man.
Kane's goal, just under 10 minutes later, was the best of the night. The Tottenham striker is yet to get off the mark in the Premier League, but his finishing instincts were as sharp as ever as he dinked a beautiful finish over the goalkeeper following Jonjo Shelvey's perfect through ball.
England's sixth goal arrived just seconds later when Barkley released Walcott for a cool finish. The Gunner should have had a hat-trick not long afterwards when John Stones put him through on goal again, but he put his effort wastefully wide.
San Marino mustered their only shot on goal in the 84th minute, but the full-time whistle arrived without further incident as England booked their place in next summer's European Championship.