Joachim Löw's Germany secured their place at Russia 2018 ©Getty Images

Reigning world champions Germany and England have become the latest countries to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

Joachim Löw, the German coach, saw his side secure top spot in Group C of European qualifying following a 3-1 win over Northern Ireland at Belfast's Windsor Park.

The game saw Sebastian Rudy open the scoring for Germany with a sensational strike after two minutes, before Sandro Wagner doubled the advantage with 20 minutes played.

Joshua Kimmich added a third goal on 86 minutes, with Josh Magennis then handing the host nation a consolation with a goal in injury-time.

It means Germany are on course to defend the title they won in Brazil in 2014.

England's path was sealed after Harry Kane bagged a dramatic 1-0 injury-time win for the Three Lions against Slovenia at London's Wembley Stadium, which secured top spot in Group F.

Harry Kane secured a 1-0 win for England against Slovenia ©Getty Images
Harry Kane secured a 1-0 win for England against Slovenia ©Getty Images

Kane's strike ensured that England have reached their sixth consecutive World Cup, matching their record run of appearances from 1950 to 1970 which included the 1966 win on home soil.

For Germany, Russia 2018 will mark their 19th World Cup appearance, bettered only by Brazil for which 2018 will be their 21st appearance.

In addition to hosts Russia, the Germans, English and Brazilians will be joined by Iran, Japan, Mexico, Belgium, South Korea and Saudi Arabia who have also already booked their World Cup places.

In all, 32 teams will take part, with Russia automatically qualifying as the hosts.

Twenty-two teams are still yet to seal their spots with qualifying continuing across the world.

The qualification process has been taking place for more than two years, having begun in Dili, Timor Leste, in March 2015.

Zimbabwe and Indonesia were disqualified before playing their first matches, but Bhutan, South Sudan, Gibraltar and Kosovo made their debuts.