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Euro 2020: Germany thwart Portugal 4-2 in a nightmare game for defenders

Six goals were scored on the night, two of which were own goals as Germany beat Portugal 4-2 to move into second place in Group F

June 20, 2021 / 12:17 AM IST
Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo, right, talks to Germany's Toni Kroos after the Euro 2020 soccer championship group F match between Portugal and Germany in Munich, Saturday, June 19, 2021. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, Pool)

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo, right, talks to Germany's Toni Kroos after the Euro 2020 soccer championship group F match between Portugal and Germany in Munich, Saturday, June 19, 2021. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, Pool)

Germany are back and boy did they announce it in style. Many had written off the 2014 FIFA World Champions after their 1-0 loss against France in the opening fixture of Euro 2020. But they came back in style to outclass Portugal 4-2 to blow the points table wide open in Group F with all four teams standing a chance to make it to the knockout stage. France's 1-1 draw with Hungary earlier in Budapest and Germany's win mean there is all to play for in Wednesday's final group games when the Germans host Hungary and the French meet holders Portugal.

Germany led the attack in the first 15 minutes, but a goal from Ronaldo changed all that and Germany looked like they could buckle under the pressure. But Germany believed and attacked with intent. They attacked relentlessly and it was Portugal who caved and let in two own goals courtesy of Ruben Dias and Guerreiro to give Germany the lead at halftime.

A Kai Havertz goal underlined Germany's dominance before left-back Robin Gosens capped his man-of-the-match display by heading in Germany's fourth goal to add to his two assists. Portugal hit back when Diogo Jota tapped in Ronaldo's hooked volley to make it 4-2 with 23 minutes left. Germany continued their domination of Portugal, who they have now beaten five consecutive times at World Cup or European Championship finals since Euro 2000.

Germany had a goal disallowed controversially by VAR in the 5th minute. A sloppy Germany defending saw Portugal attack on the break in the 15th minute. Bernardo Silva found Jota down the field on the left with a brilliant cross, who drive it across the face of goal for Ronaldo to tap in his 107th International goal for Portugal. Portugal looked set to run away with the game but two own goals in the space of four minutes changed all that. Gosens' volley was flicked towards the net by Havertz but Dias got the final touch as Germany drew level. Minutes later Kimmich's fiery cross into the box was turned into the Portugal goal by Guerreiro to give Germany the lead.

Germany continued to press and Portugal were left clueless. It was Gosens who was the playmaker again. His low cross into the box was tapped in by Havertz in the 51st minute before heading a goal himself in the 59th minute from a Kimmich cross to extend Germany's lead to 4-1. Portugal pulled a goal back when Guerreiro's free-kick was hooked back by Ronaldo and turned in by Jota. Germany nearly added a fifth when Goretzka surged forward on the Portuguese goal, but his shot went marginally over the bar.

Close
This is the first time Portugal have conceded four goals since losing 4-0 to Germany at the 2014 World Cup. The loss means Portugal have a mountain to climb in the third game where they face world champions France who sit top of the group with four points. A draw is enough France to go through, but they will be playing for the win to avoid any mishaps. Germany on the other hand will face Hungary who need a win to ensure their passage into the Round of 16. It will all come down to Match Day 3 in Group F to decide who goes through to the Round of 16.
Neeraj Krishnan
first published: Jun 20, 2021 12:17 am

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