Monday, 16 July, 2018

Toni Kroos rescues German World Cup hopes with last-gasp victor

Gotze wins the 2014 World Cup for Germany. Image PA Images Gotze wins the 2014 World Cup for Germany. Image PA Images
Isaac Mcdaniel | 28 June, 2018, 05:58

Now all they need is a win next week and a Mexico to win or draw OR a win and goal differential advantage over Sweden.

In the earlier Group F game in Rostov-on-Don, Mexico strolled to a 2-1 win over South Korea, fueled with confidence from their opening victory over Germany.

Germany are unbeaten in their last 11 games against Sweden and are confident of continuing their dominance over the Swedes.

Things got worse before they got better for Germany as the game ensued, as Jerome Boateng was issued his second yellow card of the match via a violent tackle.

With the score tied in the fifth minute of stoppage time, Kroos seemed to remind Reus of a tricky set play from training that will live in World Cup lore.

After starting slow against Panama in the opener, Belgium was lethal for most of the match against Tunisia on Saturday, cruising to a 5-2 victory that leaves them close to the round of 16.

South Korea coach Shin Tae-yong admitted his defence had been shaken during their 2-1 World Cup Group F loss to Mexico on Saturday which left the Asian side on the brink of elimination after two games.

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Although no one can no for sure, I have my doubts that Japan would have won its opener had it not been for the red card. It was not a problem he had four minutes later when he laid on a sweet backheel that Inui struck off the crossbar.

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Reus connected with his knee to steer the ball home for the equalizer early in the second half to mark the beginning of a massive German offensive.

The ball arced over helpless keeper Robin Olsen into the net, sparking an explosion of German joy on the bench and in the stands as the reigning champions kick-started their World Cup campaign. But Germany's win changes that big time.

Belgium now has six points in the group stage, so it has all but ensured itself a spot in the Round of 16. Under that scenario Sweden would be the group champion and Mexico the group runner-up.

It was the 14th to be awarded in the tournament so far - more than in the entire 2014 World Cup - with many pointing to the newly-introduced VAR as the reason for the spike in penalties.

Tunisia captain Wahbi Khazri got his team's second with nearly the last kick of the match.

Tottenham Hotspur forward Son Heung Min curled in for South Korea three minutes into stoppage time but it was too late to mount a fightback. The flawless pace. The ideal curl, the combo play with Reus catching Sweden by surprise just enough that defenders and goalkeeper Robin Olsen were unable to react.

Mexican fans celebrate at the Angel of Independence monument in Mexico City, Mexico on June 23, 2018 following Mexico's win against South Korea.

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