Soccer – Poland beat Andorra to secure World Cup playoff place

Poland secured a World Cup playoff spot with one game to spare after Paulo Sousa’s side beat Andorra 4-1 in Group I, thanks to a brace from striker Robert Lewandowski.

Andorra’s Ricard Fernandez received a red card only 20 seconds into the game for elbowing Kamil Glik, leaving the underdogs down to 10 men as Poland took control of the game.

Poland’s main man Lewandowski opened the scoring in the fifth minute from a Kamil Jozwiak pass, six minutes before the Derby County winger made it 2-0 after receiving a cross from Przemyslaw Frankowski.

Andorra managed to pull one back in the 45th minute when a Marc Vales free kick from the sideline beat goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny. It was Andorra’s eighth goal in Group I, their best return in any major tournament qualifying campaign.

Poland’s Arkadiusz Milik made it 3-1 just before halftime, in his first international match since March, while Lewandowski completed the rout in the second half with his eighth strike of the campaign, heading the ball in from a Piotr Zielinski cross.

Poland have 20 points from nine games, three points behind leaders England and five points ahead of Albania with one game remaining.

(Reporting by Bartosz Dabrowski and Milla Nissi in Gdansk; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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