Netherlands were inspired by a record-breaking Robin van Persie to a rampant 8-1 win over Hungary on Friday.
The 30-year-old struck twice in the first half to equal Patrick Kluivert’s tally of 40 goals, and he broke the record eight minutes after the break with a close-range finish.
The Manchester United striker opened the scoring early with a well-placed header before Kevin Strootman doubled the Dutch’s lead with a looping header of his own.
Jeremain Lens and Van Persie’s second then put the hosts in complete control at the break and while Hungary pulled a goal back through a Balazs Dzsudzsak penalty, Van Persie soon netted his 41st international goal to take his place in the record books.
Szilard Devecseri scored an own goal with 25 minutes left before a free kick double from Rafael van der Vaart and Arjen Robben sealed Netherlands’ emphatic win.
Dutch coach Louis van Gaal made five changes to the side that beat Andorra to seal their qualification last month, while the visitors brought in Zsolt Korcsmar and Jozsef Varga for Zsolt Laczko and Akos Elek from their 5-1 win over Estonia.
Hungary soon found themselves chasing the game as Van Persie opened the scoring after just 16 minutes, the striker backing off his defender inside the penalty area to head Daryl Janmaat’s cross into the top corner for his ninth goal of qualifying.
And nine minutes later, the lead was doubled by Strootman. Lens delivered a perfect cross this time onto the head of the Roma midfielder, whose looped header beat Adam Bogdan.
Lens then got his name on the scoresheet in the 38th minute after Strootman’s chipped pass to Robben had been cleared by a Hungary defender and the Dynamo Kiev forward reacted quickest to fire into the back of the net.
And as the Dutch ran riot, Van Persie netted their fourth just before half-time to move level with Kluivert. Robben raced down the left and clipped a cross to the front post, where the Manchester United man was on hand to headed past Bogdan.
The visitors were awarded a penalty two minutes into the second half after Jeffrey Bruma handled a Dzsudzsak cross. The midfielder took the penalty himself and calmly sent Michel Vorm the wrong way to pull a goal back.
But the night belonged to Van Persie and, with 53 minutes on the clock, he claimed his place in Dutch footballing history. Strootman and Robben were again involved as the former found the latter with a left-wing cross, and when the Bayern Munich forward headed the ball down to Van Persie, he had the simple task of knocking the ball home.
It was six when a Lens cross to the back post was headed into his own goal by Devecseri, but the Dutch were not finished there.
First, Van der Vaart’s 86th-minute free-kick from the edge of the area found the net via a deflection before Robben curled home another set-piece on the brink of full-time to condemn Hungary to a defeat that leaves their play-off hopes in the balance.
1 - 0
2 - 0
J. Lens 38'
3 - 0
4 - 0
4 - 1
47' B. Dzsudzsák (PG)
5 - 1
S. Devecseri (OG) 65'
6 - 1
R. van der Vaart 86'
7 - 1
A. Robben 90'
8 - 1
|10||R. van der Vaart||86'|
|6||N. de Jong||64'|
|9||R. van Persie||16' 44' 53'|
|Coach: L. van Gaal|
for R. van Persie 61'
for K. Strootman 81'
|Destro says yes to Milan move|
|Allardyce not expecting Sakho ban|
|Ribery sidelined for three Bayern Munich matches|
|Cahill refuses to rule out retirement after Asian Cup final|
|Pogba to leave Juve by end of next season - Agent|
|Martinez not planning Eto´o replacement|
|Blatter formally submits bid to remain FIFA president|
|Puncheon predicts ´great times´ for Palace|
|Donadoni has no plans to leave Parma and criticises Cassano|
|Mangala: My first season at City could have been better|
|UAE v Iraq: Rare podium finish on offer|
|Ryan spurred on by Australia´s 2011 heartbreak|
|Montella will not sell Cuadrado cheap|
|Mali, Guinea furious with tie-breaking procedure|
|Luis Enrique defends Neymar´s behaviour|
|Gabi: Referee lacked personality|
|Chile 3 USA 2: Gonzalez´s brace extends Americans´ pain|
|Franjic cleared of serious injury|
|Our progression was deserved - Pochettino|
|Ivory Coast´s tournament starts now - Renard|
|Allegri rejects Juve criticism|
|Atletico´s Arda Turan escapes red card after throwing boot at assistant referee|
|Atletico Madrid 2 Barcelona 3 (agg 2-4): Neymar double secures semi-final spot|
|Parma 0 Juventus 1: Morata late show wins it for visitors|
|Sheffield United 2 Tottenham 2 (agg 2-3): Pochettino books Wembley final|
|Ecuador dismiss Vizuete|
|Championship Preview: Middlesbrough out to continue run, Bournemouth seek response|
|Guinea 1 Mali 1: Lots to decide Group D runners-up|
|Cameroon 0 Ivory Coast 1: Gradel strike sends Renard´s men through|
|Lots to be drawn to decide AFCON qualifiers|
|Eredivisie Preview: De Boer warning for Ajax, leaders PSV host Willem II|
|Bundesliga Preview: Leaders Bayern and Wolfsburg kick off Ruckrunde|
|Howard boost for Everton|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Jardim plays down Monaco title hopes ahead of Lyon showdown|
|Costa charged by FA for alleged Can stamp|
|O´Keefe joins Cardiff|
|Dons teenager Alli in demand|
|Gabriel seals Arsenal switch|
|Wolfsburg v Bayern Munich: Guardiola eyes ´big step´ to Bundesliga title|
|Paris Saint-Germain v Rennes: Montanier seeks another upset in French capital|
|Martinez rules out panic buys|
|Gilardino targets Fiorentina goals|
|Milan agree Bocchetti loan|
|League Two Preview: Cambridge and Luton prepare to renew rivalries|
|Ronaldo hit with two-match ban|
|West Brom complete McManaman deal|
|Sullivan hits back in Sakho row|
|Richards: Cuadrado suited to Premier League|
|Figo to challenge for FIFA presidency|
|Inzaghi out to freshen up struggling Milan|
|Wigan agree a fee for Mckay|
|Carver eyes strong finish|
|Bowen cools talk of Stoke swoop for Sandro and Traore|
|Lazio-bound Morrison lands in Rome|
|Mourinho fined £25k for ´campaign´ claims|
|Mainz bring in Castillo|
|Villa: Lambert will not be sacked|
|Monk hopeful of adding new faces|
|Sainsbury ready to replace Franjic|
|Beckenbauer hopeful of Guardiola stay|
|Mourinho hits back at Costa critics|
|Rodriguez grateful for ´fundamental´ Ronaldo support|
|La Liga Preview: Real want revenge against Socieded|
|No Dallas move for Essien|
|Bale rubbishes United link, Ronaldo rift|
|Sahin in ´good shape´ for Bundesliga resumption|
|Rodgers slams Costa´s stamp collection|
|Under-fire Inzaghi urges patience|
|Rodgers: Courtois saved Chelsea|
|Mashaba wants lessons to be learnt after AFCON exit|
|Mourinho refuses to wade into Costa incidents after Chelsea win|
|Football League Review: Bent double sends Derby second, Rotherham triumph|
|Chelsea 1 Liverpool 0 (aet, agg 2-1): Ivanovic settles action-packed League Cup semi-final|
|Milan 0 Lazio 1: Inzaghi future plunged into further doubt|
|Neymar dreaming of ending Brazil´s home hoodoo|
|South Africa 1 Ghana 2: Late Ayew winner seals qualification|
|Senegal 0 Algeria 2: Mahrez and Bentaleb dump Senegal out|
|Bocchetti poised to join Milan on loan|
|De Rossi suffers calf injury|
|Montano accuses Oldham of double standards after Evans saga|
|Bojan out for the season with ruptured cruciate|
|Cameroon v Ivory Coast: Renard defends Yaya Toure|
|Yanga-Mbiwa makes Roma move permanent|
|Guinea v Mali: Quarter-final berth on offer in Mongomo|
|Thohir: Inter not reliant on European football|
|Bremen land Vestergaard|
|Allegri refuses to rule out Cassano move|
|Mexes handed four-game ban after Lazio dismissal|
|Joyce reveals Valdes´ inspirational team-talk|
|CAF announces AFCON venue switches|
|Alcacer commits future to Valencia|
|Postecoglou calls for Aussie ´energy´|
|Everton confirm Eto´o departure to Sampdoria|
|Pochettino to stick with Vorm despite cup error|
|Barcelona are not favourites against Atletico, says Luis Enrique|
|Allegri wary of Parma backlash in Coppa Italia|
|Zidane urges Real to tie Ancelotti down|
|FIFPro: Transfer system failing football|
|Anderlecht condemn Standard´s Defour banner|
|Australia 2 UAE 0: Socceroos ease into home final|
|Barca overhaul youth system|
|FIFPro demands clubs respect contractual obligations|
|Mahmoud targeting World Cup place with Iraq|
|Fabregas wants Chelsea to show winning mentality|
|Rangers borrow £10m from Ashley´s Sports Direct|
|Lyon face anxious wait over Lacazette|
|Undermanned Lazio recall Perea|
|Ki wants South Korea to prove their superiority|
|Ghana´s Gyan wary of South Africa|
|Mashaba urges South Africa to attack|
|Benitez: Napoli deserved to win|
|Pacos de Ferreira 1 Benfica 0: Leaders fail from the spot|
|Serie A Review: Higuain at the double in controversial Napoli win, Udinese see off Empoli|