Advertisement

Belgium 5-0 Azerbaijan: Romelu Lukaku scores four first-half goals in Euro 2024 qualifier

Romelu Lukaku celebrates scoring for Belgium against Azerbaijan

Romelu Lukaku scored four first-half goals as Belgium thrashed 10-man Azerbaijan in Euro 2024 qualifying.

The 30-year-old now has 83 goals in 113 Belgium games, making him the seventh-highest scorer in men's international football history.

He headed in Jeremy Doku's cross before Eddy Israfilov was sent off, then smashed in a second from Timothy Castagne's knock down, nodded in Wout Faes' cross, and scored from Orel Mangala's ball, all before being replaced at half-time.

Leandro Trossard added a late fifth for Belgium from Doku's ball, with all five goals being set up by England-based players.

This was Belgium captain Lukaku's first international quadruple, having scored four once before in his club career in Everton's 6-3 Premier League win over Bournemouth in February 2017.

Only Cristiano Ronaldo (128, Portugal), Ali Daei (109, Iran), Lionel Messi (106, Argentina), Sunil Chhetri (93, India), Mokhtar Dahari (89, Malaysia) and Ferenc Puskas (84, Hungary) have scored more than Lukaku in international football.

His 14 qualifying goals put him far clear of closest challengers Ronaldo and Kylian Mbappe, who have scored 10 and nine respectively in this campaign.

Fourteen goals is a record for a European Championship qualifying campaign - beating the benchmark of 13 set by Northern Ireland's David Healy in 2008 and equalled by Poland's Robert Lewandowski in 2016.

The Red Devils had already booked their place in Euro 2024 and overtook Austria to finish top of Group F with this victory. They remain unbeaten since boss Domenico Tedesco joined in February.

Sweden, whose qualification hopes were already over, beat Estonia 2-0 in Stockholm in the group's other fixture.