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England Women produced a record-breaking performance at Doncaster's Keepmoat Stadium as they beat Latvia 20-0 in a result that will not have gone down well at UEFA HQ.
The Lionesses were cruising within 25 minutes, with Beth Mead bagging a hat-trick, Ellen White scoring twice and Lauren Hemp also on the scoresheet to make it 6-0 before the half-hour mark.
Hemp went on to net another three of her own, while White also completed her hat-trick to become the Lionesses' record goalscorer.
In total there were 10 different England goalscorers – with Ella Toone, Georgia Stanway, Bethany England, Jill Scott, Jordan Nobbs, Jess Carter and Alessio Russo (hat-trick) completing the rout.
The victory was England's sixth on the spin and the third time they have hit double figures in their last five games after previous 10-0 successes over Latvia and Luxembourg – while their previous best was 13-0 vs Hungary in 2005.
Sarina Wiegman's side remain top of their World Cup qualifying group and are in pole position to qualify for the 2023 tournament, having now scored 53 goals without reply.
However, the manner of England's latest victory will not have impressed UEFA, who are seeking to alter the qualifying structure in an attempt to cut down on the number of one-sided matches.
Do UEFA need to look at changing the qualifying structure for the women's world cup? Let us know in the comments section.
"The qualification systems for the World Cup and Euro, which UEFA organises and not FIFA, they’re already going to be examined very closely and we will see an improvement in the future," Nadine Kessler, UEFA’s head of women’s football, said in a recent interview with The Associated Press.
"I think we need to really take a look closely to have more evenly-matched matches," Kessler added, "but also to have some opportunities to still see where’s the bar and to compete against the very best.
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"We’ve done this (preliminary round) already and also maybe that was not the right solution for competitive balance. Then it was changed to group stage with all this. I can tell you that the debate about this pre-qualifying seeding, it all happened."
"What you want to do is develop women’s football worldwide of course but the difference between qualities now is actually huge and it’s not very competitive when you win 8-0", Wiegman said after England thrashed North Macedonia 8-0 in their opening World Cup qualifying fixture.
"Having too many matches which finish 8-0 — or those kinds of results — that’s not good for the game."
God only knows what she made of events at the Keepmoat on Tuesday.
- England Football Team
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