Back to the wall before facing Costa Rica, Germany certainly took the best (4-2) against Keylor Navas’ teammates. Carried by the double of Kai Havertz, the Germans nevertheless leave the World Cup. Blame it on a stunning victory for Japan, at the same time, against Spain (2-1). Throwback to an incredible evening when Germans and Spaniards were eliminated from this World Cup for a few minutes…
A final in the group E! Opposed to Costa Rica, this Thursday at 8 p.m., Germany, held in check by Spain (1-1) after their inaugural defeat against Japan (1-2), no longer had the right to make mistakes. . Forced to impose themselves to continue the Qatari adventure, Hans-Dieter Flick’s men, aligned in 4-2-3-1, presented themselves with determination at the Al-Bayt stadium in Al-Khor. An ambition also present in the Costa Rican ranks, still in the race for a historic qualification in the round of 16. Swept away by Spain in the first match (0-7), the Ticos, who defeated Samourai Blue (1-0), had a date with their destiny.
Germany takes the lead, without shining!
Directed by Stéphanie Frappart, the first central referee in the World Cup, this meeting quickly offered a one-sided spectacle. Determined to impose their superiority, Joshua Kimmich’s teammates took control of possession and brought danger to the goals of Keylor Navas. If Jamal Musiala and Serge Gnabry quickly solicited the Parisian goalkeeper (2nd, 5th) and Thomas Müller saw his header flee, the Costa Rican executive (9th), Serge Gnabry, well found by David Raum, logically opened the score of a nice header (1-0, 10th). Cornered the defense of Costa Rica was (still) close to cracking but Navas pulled out all the stops on a new header from Leon Goretzka (14th). Although the pace of this game dropped slightly, the Germans remained dangerous.
Twirling on the front of the attack, Musiala signaled a new number but his strike finally flirted with the Costa Rican cages (36th). In the process, Gnabry transplanted in the axis but saw, too, his attempt slipped away, just next to the goals of Navas (40th). Harmless and unable to deploy the slightest offensive, the Ticos took advantage, on the other hand, of the clumsiness of the opponents to bring danger. On a huge blunder from Rüdiger, Fuller tried his luck but Neuer pushed back for a corner (42nd). Without shining, Germany turned, despite everything, in the lead at the break. Upon returning from the locker room, Klostermann replaced Goretzka but the Mannschaft lacked sharpness. Worse still, the teammates of Ilkay Gündogan, who had just entered the game, were putting themselves in danger. And what had to happen happened…
An incredible scenario before… elimination!
On a cross from the right, Neuer pushed back for the first time but Yeltsin Tejeda, opportunistic, followed and concluded upwind (1-1, 58th). If Musiala found, in stride, the post of Navas (61st), this equalizer eliminated, temporarily, Germany. Note that at the same time, on the hour mark, Japan was leading on its side, to everyone’s surprise, against Spain (2-1). Stunned, the Germans completely cracked a few moments later… On a free kick from the left side, Juan Pablo Vargas took advantage of several deflections to give the advantage to his team (2-1, 70th). In shock, the triple European champions finally relied, three minutes later, on Kai Havertz to revive (2-2, 73rd).
Still eliminated despite this equalizer, Germany rushed to attack but the Costa Rican defense did not give up in the face of the German assaults. Found in the penalty area, Niclas Füllkrug thus came up against, at close range, an Imperial Navas (76th). Asphyxiated, the defense of the Ticos logically ended up yielding. On a new cross from Gnabry, Havertz arose to offer himself a double and restore the advantage to his people (3-2, 85th). Dominating in the last moments, Flick’s men insisted and took off. Served back by Leroy Sané, Füllkrug went there for his goal. If his achievement was, at first, refused for an offside position, Stéphanie Frappart finally validated it after the intervention of the VAR (4-2, 89th). In the last seconds, Germany maintained its advantage. However, despite this success, an improbable scenario was confirmed at the Khalifa International Stadium… Fallout of Spain, Japan retained the lead in group E and, as a result, took Germany out of the 2022 World Cup. A new thunderclap after the elimination of Belgium, a little earlier in the day.
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