German nightmare, useless poker and Germany says goodbye to Qatar

Japan’s victory condemns Flick’s national team to the same points as Spain, which however passes through goal difference

Again a disappointment for the Germany at the World Cup: for the second consecutive time the German national team goes out in the group stage and this time it is the goal difference that condemns Flick’s men. The victory against the is useless Costa Rica for 4-2, in the other match of group E the Japan won a sensational 2-1 against Spain thus qualifying in first place, while the four-point Red Furies go to the round of 16 for the best goal difference.

Nightmare Germany in Qatar: for the second time in a row the Germans go out in the group stage at the World Cup and this time it is the goal difference that condemns the Teutonic national team. The 4-2 trimmed to the point is useless Costa Rica, it is Japan (winner 2-1 over Spain in the other match in group E) that knocks out Flick’s national team. Level on points between Germany and Spain, at 4, but the best goal difference of the Red Furies saves Luis Enrique. In an already historic match even before starting thanks to the referee Stephanie Frappart, the first woman to whistle in a World Cup, after less than two minutes Musiala engages Navas with a shot from just outside the area. Then Muller headed Goretzka’s cross instead inaccurately. It’s just the dress rehearsal for the German advantage, which punctually arrives in the 10th minute with gnabry: another header in the Central American area, this time the Germany player is precise and Navas can do nothing. In the 19th minute the challenge of the German headers continues, Goretzka finds Navas attentive and the doubling fades away. Monologue Germany that continues between 35 ‘and 39’ with two chances in series: shot from distance by Music it but Navas blocks in two stages, Gnabry’s shot that touches the post. Costa Rica’s first jolt comes in the 43rd minute thanks to the sensational mistake by Raum and Rudiger who do not postpone and allow Fuller to be face to face with Neuer: a blow destined under the crossbar, but the number 1 of Bayern touches just enough.

Final shiver for Flick’s national team, in the second half the news of Japan’s advantage shakes Germany and it is incredibly Costa Rica who strike in the 58th minute with Tejeda, good at rebutting Fuller’s header badly rejected by Neuer on the net. Angry reaction from Germany with Musiala’s post after just two minutes, then Muller finally grazes the crossbar Rudiger hit the post all within 120 seconds. In the 67th minute another post from Musiala with a great shot from outside: it was a curse for Germany and in the 69th minute the nightmare for the Germans materialized. Scrum in the area after a free-kick and a rebound between Vargas and Neuer he caromed the ball into the German goal, everything was regular and Costa Rica was ahead 2-1 and qualified. However, the joy lasts very little, because in the 72nd minute Havertz he is alone inside the area and signs the immediate equalizer, then Fullkrug has the great opportunity to overturn the score but shoots against Keylor Navas from one meter. He thinks about it then Havertz in the 84th minute to put the seal on the 3-2, emerging behind the Central American defense and thus restoring some hope to Germany. The German ear is therefore inclined towards Japan-Spain, where the Japanese continue to win and thus condemn Germany to third place. Meanwhile, poker also arrives with Fullkrug but the real match is played in the other stadium where a match from Spain is needed: the 2-2 does not arrive and there are tears for the German players.

COSTA RICA (3-4-2-1):
Navas 6, Duarte 5, Waston 5, Vargas 6, Fuller 6 (29′ st Bennette free), Borges 5, Tejeda 6.5 (48′ st Wilson free), Oviedo 5.5 (48′ st Contreras free), Aguilera 5 (1′ st Salas 6), Campbell 5.5, Venegas 5 (29′ st Matarrita 6). Extras: Alvarado, Sequeira, Chachon, Hernadez, Lopez, Martinez, Ruiz, Torres, Zamora. Coach: Suarez 5.5
GERMANY (4-2-3-1): Neuer 5,5, Kimmich 6, Süle 5 (48′ st Ginter sv), Rüdiger 5, Raum 5 (22′ st Gotze sv), Gündogan 5 (10′ st Fullkrug 6,5), Goretzka 5 (1′ st Klostermann 6), Gnabry 6.5, Musiala 7, Sané 6, Müller 6 (22′ st Havertz 7.5). Available: Ter Stegen, Trapp, Adeyemi, Bella-Kotchap, Brandt, Gunter, Hoffman, Kehrer, Moukoko, Schlotterbeck. Ct: Flicks 6.5
Scorers: 10′ Gnabry (G), 58′ Tejeda (CR), 69′ Vargas (CR), 72′ Havertz (G), 84′ Havertz (G), 88′ Fullkrug (G)
Referee: Frappart (France)
Ammonites: Duarte
Note: recovery 1′ + 10′


Germany have been eliminated in the group stage of the World Cup in back-to-back editions (since 2018), having progressed past the first group stage in each of their 16 previous tournament appearances.

Costa Rica have scored more World Cup goals against Germany (4) than any other team, surpassing their three against Uruguay in 2014.

Germany have failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last 12 matches at major international tournaments (World Cup + European Championship), further extending their longest streak of consecutive matches with goals conceded.

Germany hit three woodblocks in a World Cup match for the first time since this data was available (since 1966).

Niclas Füllkrug is the second player to score and assist for Germany in a World Cup match as a substitute, after Rudi Völler against Argentina in 1986.

Jamal Musiala (19 years, 278 days) became the youngest player to make more than five shots in a World Cup match since 1966 (eight for him tonight).

Kai Havertz is the second player to score twice as a substitute for Germany at the World Cup, after André Schürrle in the 2014 match against Brazil.

Yeltsin Tejeda is the eighth Costa Rican player to both score and assist in a single World Cup, the first since Joel Campbell in 2014.

Serge Gnabry was involved in 29 goals in 39 appearances for Germany in all competitions, scoring his 21st goal tonight (8 assists).

Thomas Müller played in his 121st match for Germany, equaling Bastian Schweinsteiger. Only Lukas Podolski (130), Miroslav Klose (137) and Lothar Matthäus (150) featured more times for the Germans.

Manuel Neuer played his 19th World Cup match today, becoming the goalkeeper with the most appearances in the history of the competition.

Costa Rica fields its starting 11 with the highest average age in a World Cup contest (31 years and 37 days). Only two World Cup starting lineups this millennium are older: Belgium today against Croatia (31 years 95 days) and Australia against Germany in 2010 (31 years 118 days).

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About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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