German Sub Sinks Hungary, Books England Showdown
German sub Leon Goretzka has come off the bench to salvage a 2-2 draw with Hungary in Munich, condemning the plucky Hungarians, who deserved better, to elimination at the group stage, while booking a huge England v Germany showdown in the Round of 16.
After a dramatic evening that saw France draw 2-2 with Portugal, the 2016 World Cup champions finished second in Group F.
On 11 minutes, Hungary opened the scoring with a diving header from captain Adam Szalai, who finished off Roland Sallai’s whipped cross behind the German defense.
Kai Havertz gave Germany a lifeline on 66 minutes when he netted his second goal of the tournament. Following Hungary’s Peter Gulacsi’s goalkeeping error, Chelsea’s midfielder headed the ball into an empty net.
Minutes later, the Hungarians responded when midfielder Andras Schafer nodded the ball past an onrushing Manuel Neuer to re-take the lead.
Leon Goretzka levelled the match once more on 85 minutes to put Germany into the round of 16.
“We made mistakes but we fought, showed character, it was not for the faint-hearted. At the end, to come through this group was good and that was the aim.
“All the ‘small’ teams invest so much work and defend well. Hungary played with ten men in their own half and they had nothing to lose. It’s great that we got through in this tough group. Now we can look forward to a match against England.
“What matters is that we are through. Now we play with England and we can look forward to that match. It is an absolute highlight to play at Wembley against England. We will be a different team than tonight, I can promise you that,” said Germany coach Joachim Low.
Man of the match Joshua Kimmich is looking forward to the showdown with England, and perhaps being afforded more room to move as England will likely be more adventurous going forward than Hungary.
“Hungary were so compact and did very well. We were not great at finding a solution to the problem, but we showed great morale. In the end it is only important to go through. That will also be the case for the next match and I think we have a good chance to accomplish this,” added Kimmich.