Initial reactions and observations
- We’re going to start these observations with Manuel Neuer. He had a pretty solid performance in goal for Germany, and it’s hard to hold him accountable for the Dutch goals. He was solid in his command of his box and made some great saves in this one. A lot of Neuer’s mistakes (not all but a lot) this season can be laid at the feet of his lack of confidence behind his defense. If he can play at this level, it’ll go a long ways to preventing those mistakes. Confidence is key, Manu.
- Boy... Oh boy. What is the defense doing in front of Neuer? Depay’s goal to pull things level at 2-2 was a terrible display from the German defense, and it certainly looked like they all forgot they were allowed to clear the ball with their feet. Germany should definitely qualify for Euro 2020, but it’s hard to see them doing anything but heading home if the defense continues to play like this.
- As for the winner... It certainly didn’t look like that was coming! Huge three points! Look for more observations and awards to come shortly!
90- FULL TIME! NETHERLANDS 2-3 GERMANY
90- GOAL! GERMANY! NICO SCHULZ! Wow! What a stunner! Just when it looked like the Dutch were going to push for a winner, Reus finds Schulz on the counter for what appears to be the winner! Incredible!
88- Reus comes on for Gnabry.
86- It certainly looks like, if a winner is coming, it’s coming for the Dutch.
80- Neuer had to come out in a hurry to collect a ball to break up a counter.
76- Is there a winner in either side? They’ve got fifteen minutes to find it.
70- Gundogan has come on for Goretzka.
68- The Netherlands made a simple adjustment to play through their wingers, and Jogi Low and his team have no idea how to counter it.
65- GOAL! NETHERLANDS! MEMPHIS DEPAY! Calamitous defending from Germany in their own penalty area. A ball just ping-pongs around in the box for a few seconds before Depay just pokes it past Neuer to make things 2-2.
62- Finally some action! Neuer with a big save .... but Promes was offside. Ho hum.
57- There’s been a lot of back and forth over the last ten minutes without either side really challenging the opposition goalkeeper.
48- GOAL! NETHERLANDS! MATTHIJS DE LIGT! His header on a Depay cross beats Neuer to the far post to immediately cut the German’s lead in half. Uh oh?
46- The second half is underway.
- It was a tremendous first half for Sane and Gnabry. Aside from the two goals, they were both constantly threatening the Dutch backline with their mere presence. Their speed makes it very hard for anyone to keep up, so the constant fear of an instant-counter is always lurking.
- Before Germany ran all over the Dutch for a ten minute stretch of the first half, Neuer had to come up with two massive saves. The double save against Babel kept the Dutch off the scoresheet, and Germany shortly followed up with a goal of their own.
- Nico Schulz is out here looking pretty solid at left back. While I personally (It’s me, Phillip.) will never forgive him for his foul that injured Kingsley Coman on the opening day of the Bundesliga, he certainly looks up to the task in this one so far.
- It must be said, however, that for as good as Germany have looked in this first half, the Dutch look downright pitiful. Pretty embarrassing performance for them at home.
40- Another HUGE save by Cillessen just a minute later. Sane is put in behind the defense, but the goalkeeper gets a diving glove to the shot to save it.
39- HUGE SAVE BY CILLESSEN! Kehrer gets on the end of a Schultz cross, but his bullet header is right at Cillessen. This was almost 3-0.
34- GOAL! GERMANY! SERGE GNABRY! Gnabry received the ball out wide and cut in on Van Dijk. The big centerback couldn’t keep up with Gnabry, and he ripped a curler to the far post to double Germany’s lead!
27- ANOTHER HUGE SAVE! Babel gets on the end of a cross and smashes his shot right into the chest of Neuer and the ball goes wide. Two massive saves from Neuer. Wow!
25- HUGE SAVE FROM NEUER! Babel gets fed behind the Germany backline, but his shot is kept out by a diving Neuer.
15- GOAL! GERMANY! LEROY SANE! Sane controls a cross into the box from Schulz and scores easily after De Ligt falls over in the box. Germany up 1-0. Impressive start!
14- Kimmich intercepts the ball in midfield and has a break into the Dutch penalty area. Instead of shooting, he keeps dribbling which allows De Jong to slide tackle the ball away from him with ease. Poor decision there from Kimmich.
12- The Netherlands earns a free kick on the top of the penalty area after Gnabry fouls Depay. Depay’s free kick, however, is sent to the heavens. Still scoreless.
10- Chance for the Netherlands thanks to Babel, but nothing comes of it.
8- After that blazing start from Germany, the match has really settled in everything being played between the two penalty boxes.
2- Gnabry forces an early save out of Cillessen. Sane’s pass to Gnabry was deflected by a Dutch defender, but it only pushed it a little more wide for Gnabry to rip a shot off.
1- AND WE HAVE KICKOFF!
One hour before kickoff: Lineups are out!
Location: Amsterdam Arena, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Time: 8:45 pm local time, 3:45 pm EST
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