England's midfielder Raheem Sterling (R) shoots to score England's third goal during the UEFA Euro 2020 Group A qualification football match between England and Czech Replublic at Wembley Stadium in London on March 22, 2019

London: Raheem Sterling scored a hat-trick as England thrashed Czech Republic 5-0 in their opening match of the 2020 European championship qualifying campaign at Wembley here.

England dominated the match on Friday and pulled ahead in the 24th minute, when Sterling positioned perfectly at the far post to tap-in from a low cross from former Manchester City team-mate Jadon Sancho, reports Xinhua news agency.

The City forward then earned a penalty just before the interval and captain Harry Kane made no mistake from the spot.


Venezuela's coach Rafael Dudamel  (L) greets Argentina's forward Lionel Messi after an international friendly football match between Argentina and Venezuela at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid on March 22, 2019 in preparation for the Copa America to be held in Brazil in June and July 2019. 

Madrid: Lionel Messi will miss Argentina's friendly against Morocco next week after picking up a groin injury in the shock 3-1 defeat to Venezuela on Friday as he made his first international appearance since the 2018 World Cup.

Barcelona star Messi started the fixture following a self-imposed eight-month exile in which he missed six friendlies since the tournament in Russia, which they exited in the last 16 at the hands of eventual champions France.


Argentina's forward Lionel Messi (C) and teammates congratulate Venezuela's players at the end of an international friendly football match between Argentina and Venezuela at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid on March 22, 2019 in preparation for the Copa America to be held in Brazil in June and July 2019

Madrid: In an international friendly at Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid, Venezuela defeated Argentina 3-1.

Newcastle's Salomon Rondon opened the scoring for Venezuela in the sixth minute, with Jhon Murillo and Josef Martinez finding the back of the net as well. Lautaro Martinez scored the Argentina's only goal in the 59th minute.

The preparation match for Copa America saw Lionel Messi return to Argentina after taking a voluntary break from the national team.


Biratnagar: India continued its dominance at the SAFF Women's Championship with the team lifting its fifth straight title on Friday in Biratnagar, Nepal with a 3-1 win over the hosts in the final.

The win extends India's unbeaten run in the tournament's history to 23 games as goals from Dalima Chhibber, Grace Dangmei and substitute Anju Tamang saw India lift the trophy in front of a partisan crowd at the Sahid Rangashala Stadium.


Serbia's Branko Jovicic, left, pushes Germany's Leroy Sane during a international friendly soccer match between Germany and Serbia at the Volkswagen Arena stadium in Wolfsburg, Germany, Wednesday, March 20, 2019.

Berlin: Leon Goretzka's equalizer secured Germany a 1-1 draw with Serbia in an international friendly ahead of the upcoming UEFA Euro 2020 qualifiers. Germany took the reins from the kick off on home soil and created a couple of chances in the opening period.

However, it were the visitors who opened the scoring against the run of the play with nine minutes played when Germany failed to clear a corner allowing Luka Jovic to tap home the opener from close range, reports Xinhua.


India U-23 coach Derrik Pereira (file photo)

New Delhi:  India will aim for a maiden appearance in the final round of the AFC U-23 Championship Qualifiers when they begin their campaign at the continental football tournament, starting in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on March 22.

India have never made it to the final round of the AFC U23 Championship until now and in Tashkent too, the road looks tough as they have been clubbed along side defending champions Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.

India U-23 team head coach Derrick Pereira named 10 19-year-olds and even a 16-year-old in the squad.


Manchester City's Portuguese midfielder Bernardo Silva celebrates after scoring during the FA Cup quarter-final football match between Swansea City and Manchester City at The Liberty Stadium in Swansea, south Wales on March 16, 2019.

Swansea: Bernardo Silva has said he wants to "make history" at Manchester City after helping the Premier League leaders move a step closer to an unprecedented quadruple.

Silva played a key role in keeping City's four-pronged pursuit of honours on track by sparking a thrilling fightback as Pep Guardiola's side overcome a two-goal deficit to beat Swansea City 3-2 in their FA Cup quarter-final on Saturday.


Mumbai: Pipped at the post by a common nemesis in the past, Bengaluru FC and FC Goa will take another shot at glory when they square off in the final of Indian Super League here Sunday.

Both the teams made it to the summit clash, to be played at the Mumbai Football Arean, in rather contrasting manner.

Bengaluru had sealed their place in the final for the second successive year with a 3-0 win against NorthEast United FC in the second leg of the play-off, recovering from a 2-1 defeat in the first leg.


Miami: The 2022 football Qatar World Cup may see an expansion from 32 to 48 teams, the FIFA President Giovanni Infantino, has said.

"We have published to our council members a feasibility study which is quite a thorough document, where we came to the conclusion that, yes, it is feasible to move the World Cup in 2022 from 32 to 48 teams.

"Provided certain conditions are met," Infantino said here during a meeting of the FIFA Council in Miami.


Liverpool's Senegalese striker Sadio Mane celebrates scoring the 1-3 goal during the UEFA Champions League, last 16, second leg football match Bayern Munich v Liverpool in Munich, southern Germany, on March 13, 2019. 

Munich: Sadio Mane scored twice to steer Liverpool into the Champions League quarter-finals after a superb 3-1 win at Bayern Munich dumped out the German giants.

Having missed the goalless first leg at Anfield three weeks ago through suspension, Virgil van Dijk's long pass led to Mane's excellent first-half goal at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday.

"His first goal was ridiculous, the calmness with how he's finished it off," Liverpool midfielder James Milner told BT Sport.