FOOTBALL NEWS

16/10/2012 20:59, Report by Mark Froggatt
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Robin's reliable

Robin van Persie was on the scoresheet as the Netherlands recorded a comfortable 4-1 win over Romania in FIFA World Cup qualifying on Tuesday.

The United striker started the match at the National Arena and produced an industrious display before finding the back of the net with a neat left-footed finish in the 86th minute.

In Porto, Jonny Evans drew 1-1 with United team-mate Nani as Northern Ireland almost upset the odds against Portugal. The Irish had taken a shock first-half lead through Niall McGinn but were eventually undone as Helder Postiga scored late on after some good work from Cristiano Ronaldo.

Elsewhere, Reds youngster Joshua King netted his first goal in senior international football to help Norway seal a 3-1 win against Cyprus, snatching the win with a late, tidy conversion.

United prodigy Robbie Brady also enjoyed a memorable evening as he made his competitive debut for Giovanni Trapattoni’s Republic of Ireland, who beat the Faroe Islands 4-1.

Unfortunately, Darren Fletcher was on the wrong end of a 2-0 scoreline as Scotland lost in Belgium. On a positive note, the United midfielder came through a full 90 minutes unscathed.

Shinji Kagawa played all of Japan's 4-0 friendly defeat to Brazil in Poland, creating an early chance for Kengo Nakamura before Alberto Zaccheroni's side fell to Paulinho's strike.

Patrice Evra will be happy after France stole a late draw against Spain at the Estadio Vicente Calderón, where Sergio Ramos’ close-range finish was cancelled out by Oliver Giroud's 93rd minute equalizer.

Ben Amos was an unused sub as England Under-21s sealed their place at the 2013 European Championship

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