FULL TIME: KOREA 2, GERMANY 0. The unthinkable has happened: Germany came into this match in second place, and into this World Cup as the favorite in their group, but they leave in last place, behind South Korea. After thrashing Mexico 3-0, Sweden have won Group F. Mexico and Sweden advance. Germany must now pick up the pieces and rebuild. Weiter, immer weiter.
99’ — The entire team remains in Korea’s penalty area desperately seeking a goal. Hummels has missed his third chance, Julian Brandt cannot find the net. The ball will not go in.
96’ — GOAL KOREA! Korea seal Germany’s fate with a second goal into an empty net. Manuel Neuer had come up to help the offense.
92’ — GOAL KOREA! Korea take the lead on a goal in a mad scramble after a corner. The referee calls it offside, but on video review, the referee awards the goal. Rather than offside, Kroos was passing back to Süle, and Korea stole the ball and scored.
88’ — As the clock ticks down, Özil sends a would-be assist to Mats Hummels, but his header misses.
83’ — Reus tries to bend the ball into the far corner, but the ball goes wide. Germany has taken 17 shots so far.
79’ — Korea make their final substitution. Niklas Süle defuses a critical Korean attack.
78’ — Son shoots just wide of the net on yet another Korean counter-attack.
77’ — Germany are playing with fire, exposing their defense as they seek the game winner.
Substitution: Julian Brandt now comes on for Jonas Hector. Germany will play with just three defenders for the rest of the match.
72’ — Germany continue to press. Another cross rolls to the feet of Gomez in front of the open goal, but a poor touch deflects it wide.
68’ — Kimmich crosses in to Gomez, but he fires a strong header straight into the hands of keeper Cho.
67’ — Germany are playing with fire now. After he is carded for diving, Son drives the ball all the way into the penalty area and nearly has the space to fire off a shot.
65’ — YELLOW CARD: Son receives a yellow card for diving.
62’ — Sweden have converted a penalty: they lead Mexico 2-0. Thomas Müller now replaces Goretzka.
58’ — At last a change: Mario Gomez replaces Sami Khedira. For Korea, Hwang replaced Koo at 55’.
50’ — Germany will be eliminated from the World Cup if the current standings hold: Sweden has just scored against Mexico. Germany now must score and win this game.
Mesut Özil creates a fantastic chance from the left wing, passing the ball back to Werner. Werner fires a strong shot, but it is just wide of goal.
47’ — Kimmich delivers a perfect cross in for Goretzka, who takes a strong header on goal, but Korea’s goalkeeper Cho makes a fantastic leaping save, swatting the ball away fully extended.
KICKOFF of the second half — Löw does not make any changes. Korea win the ball and take a quick shot, but Neuer easily catches it.
End of the first half — Germany have dominated the game, but their offense has not been able to break through Korea’s defense, despite the fact that they have hardly put up an impenetrable blockade in Germany’s way. Löw needs to decide what changes he must make to give this team an effective offense.
45’ — Three minutes of stoppage time have been added. There has been a flurry of activity by Korea, but the match continues to grind on uneventfully.
44’ — After circulating the ball aimlessly, Germany at last string together a promising attack, but Jonas Hector is called for a foul just behind the penalty spot an instant before Werner fires the ball off the post.
41’ — Lee pulls up without contact in Germany’s penalty area after racing to win the ball.
39’ — Mesut Özil gives Timo Werner an opportunity, but Werner’s shot is blocked. On the ensuing corner, Korea struggle to clear the ball and Mats Hummels finds himself with it at his feet before the goal. But Hummels’s striker instincts elude him.
36’ — Germany have nearly 80% possession but have yet to mount a convincing attack. Korea meanwhile have 11 fouls. The sky’s the limit!
33’ — Goretzka flicks the ball inside to Marco Reus, who drives forward and shoots. The shot is blocked and strikes his arm on the rebound, and the referee calls a handball. Back to the drawing board.
29’ — Toni Kroos plays a fantastic pass forward to Leon Goretzka, but Goretzka somehow manages to miss Reus and Werner with a sloppy cross back out of the penalty area, taking all the wind out of the attack.
Son briefly goes down after being struck in the head by a ball.
23’ — YELLOW CARD: Korea’s Lee sees yellow for a foul on Leon Goretzka. Korea have now tied Morocco for the most fouls this tournament.
18’ — Neuer nearly loses the ball! Khedira gives away an unnecessary foul for a high kick. Korea mass almost their entire team in the wall. Neuer shockingly fails to catch the ball but manages to dive and punch it away before Son can score, taking a knock to the head for his trouble.
16’ — Augsburg’s Koo comes down hard from an aerial challenge and clutches his back. The referee immediately stops play so he can be treated. Koo is up and seems to be all right after all.
13’ — Germany are exchanging positions — Goretzka and Reus now swapping sides, Hector drifting inside, and Werner dropping deep to get the ball.
Goretzka makes a solid tackle and launches a 3 vs 2 attack, but Goretzka serves up a poor pass to Werner and Reus. Germany win, and waste, a corner.
10’ — Ten minutes into the game, Germany is leaning very, very heavily to the left. Leon Goretzka on the right wing has touched the ball only once on — if at all. Joshua Kimmich seems shaken up after a foul.
9’ — YELLOW CARD. Korea’s Jung sees a yellow card for a very hard tackle on Jonas Hector. If Korea somehow advance, he will serve a suspension. Hector seems all right.
6’ — Reus attempts to volley a long ball by Niklas Süle into the net, but fires it harmlessly out of bounds. Korea now on the attack.
4’ — Mesut Özil barks at the referee after an uncalled foul strips his shoe off his foot. Özil slowly puts it back on, while South Korea hold back a moment to give him time. A nice gesture of sportsmanship by the Koreans.
Kickoff! — The ball is rolling, and South Korea is pressing hard. Sami Khedira was nearly dispossessed in the midfield within the first minute.
5 minutes to kickoff — The lineup is out and it’s crazy
Löw has decided to cram the midfield full with Khedira, Kroos, and Goretzka, while putting Mesut Özil on the offense instead of Thomas Müller. Niklas Süle replaces Antonio Rüdiger in the back line — at least one welcome change.
South Korea vs Germany — Group F
This is it: the game we have been waiting for. Jogi Löw must secure a victory against South Korea, ideally by a significant margin of two goals, which will guarantee that they advance. As matters stand, Germany are tied with Sweden with 3 points each. A draw will suffice, if Sweden lose to Mexico, but do not expect the Germans to let others decide their fate for them. Germany will have to compensate for at least two players unable to start: Jerome Boateng will miss this game on account of his yellow-red ejection versus Sweden, and Sebastian Rudy is still recovering from the broken nose he suffered in his first start. How Löw replaces both players (Süle or Rüdiger for Boateng? Khedira or Gündogan for Rudy—or perhaps Özil?), and what he does with Germany’s offense (Werner out left again? Gomez up front? Brandt for Müller?) remain to be seen.
Location: Kazan Arena, Kazan, Russia
Time: 5:00 pm local time, 10:00 am EST
Mexico vs Sweden — Group F
Mexico may aim to finish the group stage undefeated, but there is significantly more on the line for them: if they suffer a loss to Sweden, Sweden, not Mexico will advance — unless South Korea pull an upset and send Germany home. Mexico thus cannot rest for what promises to be a gritty match against a determined Swedish side. After falling to Germany in stoppage time, the Swedes are in the same boat as their rivals: they are seeking a win to advance and hope Germany stumble.
Location: Ekaterinburg Arena, Ekaterinburg, Russia
Time: 7:00 pm local time, 10:00 am EST
With the exception of Costa Rica, Group E is still wide open. Brazil and Switzerland are currently leading with four points each, but Serbia could cause trouble for an underperforming Brazil. Brazil need only a point to advance, while Serbia will advance to the knockout round if they manage to beat Neymar and his supporting cast, and could even win the group of Switzerland simultaneously lose to Costa Rica.
Location: Spartak Stadium, Moscow, Russia
Time: 9:00 pm local time, 2:00 pm EST
Switzerland vs Costa Rica — Group E
Switzerland is widely expected to thrash Costa Rica, which would guarantee that they advance. Even a draw vs Costa Rica would send Switzerland on to the knockout round. Xherdan Shaqiri undoubtedly hopes to flex his muscles once more.
Location: Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
Time: 9:00 pm local time, 2:00 pm EST
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