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How Manchester City players including Ilkay Gundogan, Kevin De Bruyne fared on international duty

:Headline: How Manchester City players including Ilkay Gundogan, Kevin De Bruyne fared on international duty:
Sports Mole rounds up which Manchester City players were in action for their respective nations during November's international break.
Sports Mole

Pep Guardiola will welcome back the 19 first-team players to his Manchester City side who have been representing their country during November's international break, as well as keeping an eye on three young players currently out on loan.

Eighteen of those players were spread out across Europe, while Ederson, Gabriel Jesus, Zack Steffen and Riyad Mahrez travelled to South America, Central America and Africa respectively.

Here, Sports Mole round up which City players were in action for their respective nations and how they fared on international duty.

England: Phil Foden, Jack Grealish, Raheem Sterling, John Stones, Kyle Walker

November 12: England 5-0 Albania – World Cup qualifier (Wembley Stadium, London)
November 15: San Marino 0-10 England – World Cup qualifier (San Marino Stadium, Serravalle)

Kyle Walker, John Stones, Phil Foden and Raheem Sterling were all handed starts for the Three Lions at Wembley, with the latter two providing assists for Harry Kane's second and third goals.

Foden impressed again for the senior side before being replaced just after the hour mark by club teammate Jack Grealish, while Sterling – who has now provided 42 goal contributions in 72nd international appearances – was substituted in the 77th minute. Both Walker and Stones played the full 90 minutes against Albania, helping Gareth Southgate's side keep their sixth clean sheet in Group I.

Before England's trip to San Marino, Grealish was sent home as a precaution to assess a knock picked up in training, while Sterling was given time off due to personal reasons. Both players, however, should be available to feature for Guardiola's side on Sunday when they face Everton at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League.

Meanwhile, Foden was the only City representative who started against San Marino, with the midfielder providing an assist from a sixth-minute corner for Harry Maguire to head home the opening goal, before being brought off at half time.

John Stones came on as a substitute in the 73rd minute for Emile Smith Rowe and had a comfortable evening in a three-man backline alongside Conor Coady and Tyrone Mings, while Walker was an unused substitute.

Portugal: Joao Cancelo, Ruben Dias, Bernardo Silva

November 11: Republic of Ireland 0-0 Portugal – World Cup qualifier (Aviva Stadium, Dublin)
November 14: Portugal 1-2 Serbia – World Cup qualifier (Estadio da Luz, Lisbon)

Portugal endured a frustrating end to their World Cup qualification campaign and as a result have been forced to compete in the playoffs to try to book their place in Qatar next year.

As Ruben Dias and Joao Cancelo were both one booking away from a suspension, head coach Fernando Santos decided to bench the defensive pair for the goalless draw in Dublin, with both players warming their seats on the bench for the full 90 minutes.

In addition, Bernardo Silva missed their penultimate qualifier after picking up a muscle problem in training. The playmaker was, however, able to start against Serbia, with both Dias and Cancelo joining him in the first XI.

Dias and Cancelo played the full 90 minutes at centre-back and right-back respectively, while Bernardo – who featured on the right side of an attacking front three and provided an assist for Renato Sanches to open the scoring – asked to be substitutes on the hour mark after admitting he was not fully match fit. The 27-year-old will now be assessed when he returns to Manchester ahead of Sunday's game at the Etihad.

Spain: Aymeric Laporte, Rodri

November 11: Greece 0-1 Spain – World Cup qualifier (Olympic Stadium, Athens)
November 14: Spain 1-0 Sweden – World Cup qualifier (Estadio de La Cartuja, Seville)

Spain managed to finished top of Group B and book their place at the 2022 World Cup, after claiming two slender victories against Greece and Sweden.

Aymeric Laporte played the full 90 minutes in both qualifiers, meaning the 27-year-old centre-back has started in each of the last 13 games for the Spanish national team across all competitions since confirming his allegiance to La Roja.

Laporte had an average pass completion rate of 96% across the two matches as well as making five successful tackles and winning four aerial duels.

Like Laporte, Rodri played the full 90 minutes against Greece, dictating play in a three-man midfield, however, the 25-year-old was dropped to the bench against Sweden, before coming on as a substitute in the 89th minute.

Germany: Ilkay Gundogan

November 11: Germany 9-0 Liechtenstein – World Cup qualifier (Volkswagen Arena, Wolfsburg)
November 14: Armenia 1-4 Germany – World Cup qualifier (Vazgen Sargsyan Republican Stadium, Yerevan)

Germany had already qualified for the World Cup last month, so the pressure was off Hansi Flick's side for their final two qualifiers, though the former Bayern Munich head coach was challenged with naming his starting lineup after five players were forced to withdraw from the squad, following a positive coronavirus test among the camp.

Fortunately for Man City, Ilkay Gundogan was able to start in both matches and the midfielder enjoyed a successful spell in front of goal, netting three times which has taken his international goal tally to 14.

The 31-year-old scored the opening goal from the penalty spot in an emphatic 9-0 drubbing of Liechtenstein, before converting from 12 yards once again in first-half stoppage time against Armenia to double Germany's lead.

Gundogan was then fortunate to score his second of the night in Yerevan when his effort from outside the area went straight through the hands of goalkeeper Stanislav Buchnev.

Belgium: Kevin De Bruyne

November 11: Belgium 3-1 Estonia – World Cup qualifier (King Baudouin Stadium, Brussels)
November 16: Wales 1-1 Belgium – World Cup qualifier (Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff)

Like Germany, Belgium had already secured their spot in Qatar, but the world's highest ranked side were looking to end their campaign undefeated in Group E.

Kevin De Bruyne, who started in both qualifiers, was productive once again in the final third for Roberto Martinez's side. After seeing a first-half free kick pushed onto the post, the playmaker provided an assist for Belgium's third goal against Estonia, dinking the ball to Thorgan Hazard who headed home at the far post from close range.

Five days later, De Bruyne – who had scored against Wales earlier in qualifying – curled in his 23rd international goal from the edge of the area in the 12th minute to open the scoring in Cardiff.

Ukraine: Oleksandr Zinchenko

November 11: Ukraine 1-1 Bulgaria – Friendly (Chornomorets Stadium, Odesa)
November 16: Bosnia-Herzegovina 0-2 Ukraine – World Cup qualifier (Bilino Polje, Zenica)

Ukraine's chances of qualifying for their first World Cup since 2006 remain alive after they sealed a playoff spot by finishing second in Group D, behind current world champions France at the summit.

Oleksandr Zinchenko, who was ruled out with injury for October's international break, returned to the national team setup this month and played a key part in their final qualifier against Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The 23-year-old, who played the full 90 minutes in central midfield, tapped in from close range to score Ukraine's opening goal in the 58th minute, netting his eighth international strike.

Prior to that, Zinchenko operated as a left wing-back in the 1-1 draw at home to Bulgaria, also playing for the entire match.

Netherlands: Nathan Ake

November 13: Montenegro 2-2 Netherlands – World Cup qualifier (Podgorica City Stadium, Podgorica)
November 16: Netherlands 2-0 Norway – World Cup qualifier (De Kuip, Rotterdam)

Nathan Ake did not feature in any of the Netherlands' first nine World Cup qualifiers, including the draw away against Montenegro this month, but he did come on as a substitute for the final minute of their victory against Norway in a game played behind closed doors at De Kuip.

The 26-year-old's chances in Louis Van Gaal's starting lineup have been limited, with Virgil van Dijk, Stefan de Vrij and Matthijs de Ligt all preferred ahead of him at centre-back.

Ake was at least able to wear the famous orange jersey on Tuesday for the first time since June 17, when he came on as a substitute against Austria at Euro 2020.

Brazil: Ederson, Gabriel Jesus

November 12: Brazil 1-0 Colombia – World Cup qualifier (Corinthians Arena, Sao Paulo)
November 16: Argentina 0-0 Brazil – World Cup qualifier (Estadio San Juan del Bicentenario, San Juan)

Five-time world champions Brazil confirmed their place at the 2022 World Cup after claiming four points from their two qualifiers this month.

Goalkeeper Ederson was unable to add to his 17 caps for the national team as he was forced to watch on from the bench in both qualifiers, with Liverpool's Alisson Becker preferred ahead of him between the sticks.

Meanwhile, Gabriel Jesus started against Colombia and played for 64 minutes as the central striker, before coming on as a substitute in San Juan for the final four minutes.

The 24-year-old has now failed to provide an attacking return in each of his last seven international appearances and has also been unable to see out the full 90 minutes for Brazil in each of his last 11 games across all competitions.

Algeria: Riyad Mahrez

November 12: Djibouti 0-4 Algeria – World Cup qualifier (Cairo International Stadium, Cairo)
November 16: Algeria 2-2 Burkina Faso – World Cup qualifier (Stade Mustapha Tchaker, Blida)

Riyad Mahrez's 26th international goal in a crucial World Cup qualifying decider against Burkina Faso helped Algeria claim a point and finish top of Group A, moving them into the final stage of African qualification for next year's tournament in Qatar.

The 30-year-old pounced on Youcef Belaili's cutback from the byline and placed in the opener in the 21st minute, netting his 11th goal in his last 12 international appearances for the Greens.

Prior to playing 90 minutes in Tuesday's draw, Mahrez surprisingly began on the bench against Djibouti, but the winger came out for the second half with the captain's armband.

USA: Zack Steffen

November 13: USA 2-0 Mexico – World Cup qualifier (TQL Stadium, Cincinnati)
November 16: Jamaica 1-1 USA – World Cup qualifier (National Stadium, Kingston)

USA were able to claim four points from their two World Cup qualifiers this month, however they have been knocked off top spot in the CONCACAF standings by Canada, following their 1-1 draw against Jamaica.

Goalkeeper Zack Steffen performed well between the sticks in a crucial encounter against Mexico, making four saves and keeping a clean sheet – his 11th for the national team.

The 26-year-old then made his 26th international appearance in Kingston, however he was unable to stop a powerful first-half strike from Michail Antonio, which rescued a point for the Reggae Boyz.

Republic of Ireland: Gavin Bazunu (on loan at Portsmouth)

November 11: Republic of Ireland 0-0 Portugal – World Cup qualifier (Aviva Stadium, Dublin)
November 14: Luxembourg 0-3 Republic of Ireland – World Cup qualifier (Stade de Luxembourg, Gasperich)

Republic of Ireland ended their campaign on a high with impressive results against Portugal and Luxembourg, games in which 19-year-old Gavin Bazunu played between the sticks.

After saving Cristiano Ronaldo's penalty in the reverse fixture against Portugal, Bazunu made three saves and kept a clean sheet to help Stephen Kenny's men earn a hard-fought point in Dublin.

The teenager then kept his fourth clean sheet in his 10th international appearance against Luxembourg as the Boys in Green cruised to a 3-0 victory and climbed up to third in Group A.

England Under-21s: Cole Palmer, Tommy Doyle (on loan at Hamburg), Taylor Harwood-Bellis (on loan at Anderlecht)

November 11: England Under-21s 3-1 Czech Republic Under-21s – Euro 2023 qualifier (Turf Moor, Burnley)
November 16: Georgia Under-21s 3-2 England Under-21s – Friendly (Batumi Stadium, Batumi)

Cole Palmer and Taylor Harwood-Bellis were both handed starts in England's victory over the Czech Republic, while Tommy Doyle was an unused substitute.

Palmer set up the opening goal for Anthony Gordon at Turf Moor, however that proved to be the playmaker's final contribution on international duty after he picked up a hamstring injury midway through the second half, which forced him to withdraw from the squad.

Against Georgia, Doyle was brought into the starting lineup, making his second international appearance for the Under-21s in central midfield, and he provided an assist for Marc Guehi's 94th-minute consolation goal. Harwood-Bellis, meanwhile, came on for the final 20 minutes in central defence. body check tags ::

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