On this day: England defeat Poland to win World Cup qualifying group

On this day: England defeat Poland to win group
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Eight years ago today, goals from Michael Owen and Frank Lampard earn England a 2-1 win over Poland in World Cup qualifying.

England and Poland went into their 2005 clash at Old Trafford on this very day knowing that the victor would qualify automatically for the next year's World Cup in Germany.

The draw favoured the visiting Poles, who went into the encounter two points better off than the Three Lions.

Sven-Goran Eriksson's side had received heavy criticism in the days leading up to this fixture, largely because the two outings that had proceeded it had ended in a defeat to rivals Northern Ireland and a 1-0 struggle beyond Austria.

However, they started brightly on this occasion, with Wayne Rooney at the centre of everything positive.

Despite their domination, it appeared that they would go into the break having not found the net, only for Michael Owen to break the deadlock in the 44th minute. Joe Cole drilled a shot into the area which was flying wide of the target, but Owen was able to react quickly to flick the ball past Artur Boruc.

Some say that you are at your most vulnerable when you've scored and the hosts proved that point by allowing the Poles back into the match almost immediately. Tomasz Frankowski was the scorer, leaving Paul Robinson no chance with a volley at the back post.

England continued to attack after the restart, as Owen and Rooney both called Boruc into action.

The now Southampton goalkeeper was eventually beaten 10 minutes from time when a lofted pass from Owen picked out Lampard, who rearranged his feet in time to send an acrobatic volley into the top corner of the net.

On this occasion England held firm at the back, meaning that they finished top of Group Six, having lost just once. There was also good news for Poland, who qualified as one of the two best runner-ups, thus avoiding the playoffs.

England: Robinson; Young, Ferdinand, Terry, Carragher; Wright-Phillips, King, Lampard, Cole; Rooney, Owen

Poland: Boruc; Jop, Baszczynski, Bak, Zewlakow; Sobolewski, Smolarek, Lewandowski, Kosowski, Zurawski; Rasiak

Frank Lampard celebrates scoring for England against Wales in a World Cup qualifier at Old Trafford.
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