FULL TIME: GERMANY WIN 2-1
96’ — TOOOOOORRRRRRRR! TONI KROOS SCORES OFF THE SET PIECE!
That was magic: instead of taking the kick directly, Kroos taps it to Reus, who sets it up. Then Kroos fires a rocket into the far corner past Olsen, who cannot see the ball through the mass of bodies in front of him until it’s too late.
95’ — Werner is fouled just outside the left of the penalty area.
92’ — The game-winner continues to elude Germany. After a short corner, Julian Brandt fires a rocket on goal, but it hits the post. Marco Reus cannot bring it down and is flagged offside as the ball sails over the goal.
90’ — Thelin replaces Berg for Sweden. Five minutes of stoppage time are left.
88’ — Olsen with a world-class save! Mario Gomez makes a fantastic header at the center of the goal, but Olsen reacts and punches it over the crossbar, keeping the game alive for Sweden.
87’ — Löw goes all in for the win: despite being down to 10 men, he replaces Jonas Hector with Julian Brandt, adding one more attacker to Germany’s offense.
83’ — Chance for Sweden: Neuer loses his footing for an instant as he attempts to catch the ball. He recovers just in time to punch it off its path toward the goal, giving away only a corner.
81’ — Timo Werner attempts to redirect a lightning-fast cross into the net, but fires it over the crossbar.
Just a moment later, Boateng heavily fouls Berg with a scissor tackle. That’s his second yellow card: Boateng has been sent off.
80’ — Minor scare for Germany, as it appears that Berg is about to receive the ball in a one-on-one, but he is dispossessed at the last second, and the line ref raises the offside flag.
77’ — Sweden makes another substitution: Toivonen makes way for Guidetti.
74’ — Sweden make their first substitution, replacing Claessen with Durmaz. Durmaz immediately makes some noise, drawing a corner off of Rüdiger. It is just the second corner for Sweden.
72’ — Werner creates yet another chance for Germany, but despite a chaotic scene in front of the goal — and nearly an own goal — Sweden manage to clear the ball to safety.
70’ — Jerome Boateng receives a yellow card for a tactical foul on Forsberg.
68’ — Mario Gomez makes some noise, as he tries to connect with an aerial cross. He unfortunately strikes it on the volley over the goal from close range. The referee raised his flag for offside, but he Gomez had scored, VAR might have vindicated him.
67’ — Germany are piling on the pressure, bringing the ball into Sweden’s penalty area again and again. The Swedes can do little more than clear the ball into no man’s land—out of bounds or to Neuer, who’s camped out just behind the halfway line.
61’ — Marco Reus just missed another golden opportunity: he created a fast one-two with Joshua Kimmich on the right flank, but Kimmich’s pass back rolls across the goal just outside of his reach and out of bounds by the far post.
56’ — Timo Werner creates another chance from the left: this time, Werner finds Jonas Hector in the box. Hector collects the ball and shoots, but Olsen makes the save.
52’ — Sweden’s Ekdal receives a yellow card for a hard tactical foul on Thomas Müller. Some scuffling breaks out on the pitch.
51’ — Toni Kroos finds Müller on a corner, but Müller can’t get the ball on target, heading it wide.
48’ — GERMANY SCORE! 1-1 — Now playing out wide, Timo Werner plays a cross in intended for Mario Gomez. Gomez can only deflect it into the air with his toe, but Marco Reus is right behind the play and reacts swiftly to put it into the net. Germany continue to press in the following minutes.
SECOND HALF SUBSTITUTION — Löw has decided: Julian Draxler makes way for Mario Gomez, who will challenge Sweden’s tall center-backs.
HALFTIME — Löw goes straight to the locker room. Germany have to turn this match around or they will be eliminated.
47’ — NEUER SAVES! At the end of two minutes of stoppage time, Sweden catch Germany off guard with a quickly taken free kick: Berg heads the ball toward the far post, but Neuer makes a spectacular diving save to bail his teammates out.
44’ — Sweden strike yet again, as Forsberg drives up the left and delivers a perfect, arching cross, but Claessen can’t bring the ball under control neatly enough, and loses the ball.
42’ — Germany are making some noise with crosses. Marco Reus, then Kimmich both send hopeful crosses across Sweden’s penalty area, but Germany’s attackers can’t bring them down.
39’ — Gündogan takes a well-hit shot from outside the box, but Olsen makes a spectacular diving save. Thomas Müller is at hand to contest for the rebound, but Sweden’s defense manages to knock it safely out of bounds by the side of the goal — the referee incorrectly calls for a goal kick, thinking the ball came off Müller.
33’ — SWEDEN SCORE 1-0! Incredible: Toni Kroos makes a bad pass that is intercepted. Claessen then lobs a perfect pass to Toivonen, who manages to bring the ball down and lob it over Neuer’s head into the net, right past Rüdiger.
30’ — Germany still playing with 10 men, while Rudy remains out. Rudy looks reasonably fit, but Löw has decided to replace him with Ilkay Gundogan. Rudy throws his jersey down in frustration. Löw is now scrambling to get his substitute on the pitch.
25’ — Sebastian Rudy is down. Rudy is bleeding profusely from his nose. He was struck in the face by a shoe after sliding to make a tackle. He’s being treated on the sideline now by team doctor Hans-Wilhelm Müller-Wohlfahrt.
24’ — Germany have a whopping 86% possession so far, but they have still allowed Sweden two shots, while taking just three of their own.
17’ — Germany making some very unusual tactical moves: for at least the second time this match, Thomas Müller drifts over to the left wing, while Joshua Kimmich mans the right wing alone. Jerome Boateng drives up and even exchanges places with Kimmich, while Sebastian Rudy stays back to defend.
12’ — Sweden with a massive chance: Antonio Rüdiger loses possession in the midfield and Toivonen sends a perfect pass to Berg. Boateng races up behind him and disrupts his run, just as Manuel Neuer collides with him to knock the ball away. Sweden clamor for a penalty — and they have a reasonable case — but the referee signals to play on, and the VAR booth remains silent.
9’ — The onslaught continues: Marco Reus dribbles to the goal line on the right before crossing to Timo Werner storming toward the goal, but Werner skies the ball wide.
7’ — Draxler now breaks free on the left and shoots the ball across the face of the goal.
6’ — Sweden’s no. 10 Emil Forsberg creates a frightening situation for Germany as he appears to break past Germany’s center-backs for a one-on-one with Neuer, but Boateng and Müller are able to close in on him and dispossess him near the penalty spot.
4’ — Another big chance for Germany. As Sweden struggles to contain the German attack, Hector finds the ball unmarked and takes a strong shot, but again Sweden manage to throw a body between the ball and the goal.
3’ — Germany waste no time in bringing the game to Sweden. Kimmich drives up the right, crosses inside to Werner and Müller. Germany have a close chance on the rebound, but Sweden’s defense manages to block the ball.
The Germany lineup is here and it is a doozy.
Löw makes four changes from the previous match bringing in Jonas Hector, Marco Reus, Antonio Rüdiger, and Sebastian Rudy. That sends Sami Khedira, Marvin Plattenhardt, Mesut Ozil, and Mats Hummels to the bench.
This is a must win game for Germany. A lack of three points will put their World Cup in jeopardy.
Belgium will be hoping that they can turn their great performance in matchday one against Panama into three points and a spot in the knockout rounds against Tunisia. With the problems that Harry Kane caused the Tunisians, it’s hard to see them doing a much better job against Romelu Lukaku. Don’t be surprised to see Belgium put another three spot on the board in this one.
Location: Otkritie Arena, Moscow, Russia
Time: 3:00 pm local time, 8:00 am EST
South Korea vs Mexico — Group F
If South Korea doesn’t take all three points against Mexico here, they likely find themselves on the outside looking in at a shot to make it to the knockout rounds. They have their work cut out for them if Mexico has anything to say about that. While they won’t be able to replicate the style they displayed against Germany, Mexico will be targeting all three points. If they win, they will have guaranteed themselves a spot in the knockout rounds, with a chance to win the group on the final matchday against Sweden. This is huge for Juan Carlos Osorio and a Mexican side that was struggling entering this tournament.
Location: Rostov Arena, Rostov-on-Don, Russia
Time: 6:00 pm local time, 11:00 am EST
Germany vs Sweden — Group F
Germany need to get a win here to avoid a terrifying final matchday where they don’t hold their own fate in their hands. Most critics have seen fit to throw the bulk of the team’s failure against Mexico on the shoulders of the way that Jogi Löw set the team up, so he must “fix” things against Sweden.
And, if you’re Sweden... win and you’re in. That’s all there is to it.
Location: Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, Russia
Time: 9:00 pm local time, 2:00 pm EST
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