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FCB four spur Germany

Ribery returns, Olic on target twice

In Wednesday's round of early-season internationals, the Bayern men who were battling for vital World Cup qualifying points all came away victorious, with three FCB stars getting among the goals to boot. Elsewhere, a slew of friendlies produced the customary mixed bag of results. rounds up the night's action from an FCB point of view.

Franck Ribéry appeared as a sub as France recorded a crucial victory in World Cup qualifying, defeating the stubborn Faeroes by the only goal of the game in Torshavn. France boss Raymond Domenech had agreed to field Ribéry only in the case of an emergency, but with the 2006 World Cup runners-up grimly hanging on after 65 minutes, the Bayern star replaced Florent Malouda for his first competitive run-out of the season.

French keep hopes alive

France led at that point through Toulouse striker André-Pierre Gignac's 42nd minute strike. Ribéry helped ensure that lead was defended to the end, keeping alive his country's hopes of a direct qualifying berth for the 2010 finals. The French now have 13 points in Group 7, still five off leaders Serbia but with a game in hand.

In the Azerbaijani capital Baku, a Bayern quartet provided the inspiration and the goals as Germany stayed on course for a slot at next year's showdown in South Africa. Against the side coached by Berti Vogts and ranked 137th in the world, the Germans never moved beyond the workmanlike, but also never looked in danger of failing to collect all three points to retain the upper hand over Russia in qualifying Group 4.