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Dutch ease to fourth successive victory

  • Story Highlights
  • Netherlands remain top of Group Nine after comfortable 3-0 win over Scotland
  • The result maintains the Netherlands' 100 per cent record after four matches
  • Northern Ireland go top of Group Three after a thrilling 3-2 success over Poland
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(CNN) -- The Netherlands remain top of World Cup Group Nine, maintaining their 100 per cent record in the process, after a comfortable 3-0 victory over Scotland at the Amsterdam ArenA.

Dutch players celebrate their opening goal in the comfortable 3-0 victory over Scotland.

Dutch players celebrate their opening goal in the comfortable 3-0 victory over Scotland.

The visitors missed an early chance to go ahead through Kenny Miller and they were made to pay in the 29th minute when in-form Real Madrid striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar headed home Mark Van Bommel's deep cross at the back post.

Then, on the stroke of half-time, Arsenal's Robin Van Persie added the second goal with another header from close-range, this time from Arjen Robben's corner.

Gary Caldwell thought he had brought Scotland back into the match in the 73rd minute, but his header was chalked off for a foul.

And, just three minutes later, the Dutch secured the three points with a Dirk Kuyt penalty after Christophe Berra had fouled Huntelaar.

Meanwhile, Northern Ireland moved up from fifth to top of Group Three, the tightest of the nine European groups, after a thrilling 3-2 home victory over Poland in Belfast.

The home side took a 10th minute lead when goalkeeper Artur Boruc lost the flight of a Chris Brunt cross, allowing Damien Johnson to head the ball back across for Warren Feeney to score from close range.

Poland levelled 17 minutes later when Ireneusz Jelen sprang the offside trap to fire past goalkeeper Maik Taylor, who got a hand to his effort.

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Northern Ireland retook the lead a minute into the second half when Jonny Evans swept home a Grant McCann corner and they extended their advantage further when Michal Zewlakow's backpass was completely missed by Boruc, with the ball bobbling over the goalkeeper's foot and into the empty net.

Poland pulled a goal back in stoppage-time when substitute Marek Saganowski scored with a header following a cross from Jakub Wawrzyniak but it was too little too late.

In the group's other match, Slovenia and Czech Republic drew 0-0 in Maribor, meaning Northern Ireland head the table on 10 points, one ahead of Slovakia who have two games in hand.

The Czechs and Slovenia are a further point behind, with Poland behind them on seven points -- meaning the top five in the group are separated by just three points.

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