While England were struggling last night at home to Ukraine and managed to come away only with a 1-1 draw, Yohan Cabaye and France were finding things a bit easier in Paris, as they beat Belarus 3-1 in a comfortable win, with Yohan again starting in the center of midfield for France.
Yohan Cabaye – played 75 minutes last night
France have now won both their first two qualifying games in Group I, winning their first game 1-0 against Finland last friday night, and they are top of their group, which also includes World and European Champions Spain.
All the goals in Paris last night came after the break, with Etienne Capoue and Christophe Jallet putting the hosts 2-0 up by 68 minutes, but then Anton Putilo pulled one back for Belarus before a late goal from Franck Ribery put a more respectable look on the score-line.
Cabaye played 75 minutes before being replaced by Blaise Matuidi, and he came off uninjured – which of course at this time is very important.
Northern Ireland came very close to getting a 1-0 win over Luxembourg in Belfast, through a 14th minute goal from Dean Shiels, but an equalizer by Daniel Da Mota just three minutes from time put a damper on the night, and the Irish had to settle for just one point.
Shane Ferguson, who seems to be an automatic starter these days, played the first 74 minutes .
The Newcastle squad will all be able to train together, probably starting tomorrow, but of course we have injuries to both Tim Krul and Fabricio Coloccini during the International break, and both will likely miss the important game at Everton on Monday night.
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