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Football

Highlights - Beth Mead scores four as Lionesses smash North Macedonia 10-0

Ellen White scored her 50th England goal and Beth Mead hit four as the Lionesses roared a step closer to the World Cup with a 10-0 victory over North Macedonia.

Manchester City forward White moved to within three goals of equalling Wayne Rooney’s all-time England record in a predictably one-sided qualifier in Skopje.

Mead racked up her third hat-trick of the qualifying campaign, while Ella Toone also helped herself to three goals and Georgia Stanway scored twice.

England began their qualifying campaign with an 8-0 win over the same opposition at St Mary’s in September in Sarina Wiegman’s first game in charge.

They have now scored 63 times in just seven qualifying matches – while conceding none – and if Austria drop points, they could officially book their ticket to next year’s tournament against Northern Ireland on Tuesday.

England opened the scoring in the fifth minute when Mead converted a cross from Lauren Hemp at the far post.

Mead’s second came from Stanway’s pass in the 12th minute, the Arsenal striker racing towards the byline before standing the ball up towards the far post and watching it fly straight over goalkeeper Viktorija Panchurova and into the net.

In the 24th minute, Toone picked the ball up 30 yards out, drove forward and arrowed a low shot into the bottom corner.

White brought up her half-century after 40 minutes with a trademark header from Toone’s cross, and – a minute before half-time – a slick team move down the left culminated in Hemp pulling the ball back for Stanway to tuck home number five.

Mead had been denied a first-half hat-trick by a fingertip save from Panchurova, but she completed her treble with a low drive from Hemp’s pass just 80 seconds into the second half.

The 26-year-old grabbed her fourth by converting the rebound after Hemp’s shot was saved, and Stanway’s smart turn and shot made it 8-0 with just 55 minutes on the clock.

Mead unselfishly teed up Toone to lash in number nine and the Manchester United forward completed her hat-trick, and brought up double figures, from the edge of the box with 12 minutes remaining.

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Football