SHARE
COPY LINK

FOOTBALL

Spain and Germany draw in tightly fought second World Cup match

Germany snatched a late equaliser against Spain to make it a 1-1 draw in a heavyweight World Cup clash on Sunday, leaving both sides' hopes of qualifying for the last 16 still in the balance.

Spain and Germany draw in tightly fought second World Cup match
Spain's defender #14 Alejandro Balde (L) and Spain's defender #20 Dani Carvajal and Germany's forward #19 Leroy Sane run for the ball during the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group E football match between Spain and Germany at the Al-Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, north of Doha on November 27, 2022. (Photo by François-Xavier MARIT / AFP)

Alvaro Morata’s flicked finish had Spain on course to secure qualification from Group E, but the electric Jamal Musiala and Fuellkrug combined to foil La Roja and restore some German pride.

Costa Rica’s surprise win over Japan earlier eased some pressure on Germany after their shock loss to the Asian side, but they were unable to capitalise for large periods in a battle for the ball against Spain.

The four-time world champions suffered a humiliating group-stage exit in Russia four years ago, and Morata’s strike at Al Bayt Stadium had them on the ropes, but Werder Bremen striker Fuellkrug finished brilliantly to divide the points.

Spain lead Group E on four points, from Japan and Costa Rica on three each, while Germany have one, with a final round of matches to come.

The only World Cup group-stage clash to pit two former champions against each other lived up to its top billing in intensity and tactical intrigue, with both sides set on trying to dominate possession and press extremely high.

Germany coach Hansi Flick rejected suggestions his side had been distracted in their shock opening defeat by Japan because of their pre-game protest against FIFA “silencing teams” and the taut opening exchanges quickly ensured all focus was on the football.

Flick cut Kai Havertz from his line-up and deployed Thomas Mueller up front after their shocking opening-day capitulation, hoping for a quick reaction.

However, Spain almost took the lead in the seventh minute when Manuel Neuer palmed Dani Olmo’s powerful drive from range onto the woodwork.

It seemed like they were picking up where they left off after their 7-0 demolition of Costa Rica, but Germany steeled themselves, keeping Luis Enrique’s side at bay.

Spain’s players celebrate after Spain’s forward #07 Alvaro Morata scored their team’s first goal during the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group E football match between Spain and Germany at the Al-Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, north of Doha on November 27, 2022. (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO / AFP)

Clinical Morata

Spain goalkeeper Unai Simon relied on his footwork under pressure as La Roja sought to dominate possession.

One mistake handed Serge Gnabry an opportunity, but he fired wide.

Neuer erred with the ball at his feet too, with Germany similarly looking to build from the back, but Ferran Torres could not capitalise.

Antonio Ruediger powered home a header from a free kick, but his celebration was cut short after VAR caught him half a step ahead of the Spanish defence, leaving the teams tied at the break.

Germany nearly struck after Joshua Kimmich won the ball back pressing extremely high, but Simon produced a fine save to deny him.

Just when Luis Enrique’s side seemed to have lost their grip on the game, they broke the deadlock.

Morata, on for Torres, finished clinically at the near post from an inviting low cross from Jordi Alba after 62 minutes.

It looked like it was enough for the 2010 champions, but Fuellkrug — on only his third international appearance — decided otherwise, sneaking in behind substitute Alejandro Balde and lashing past Simon with seven minutes remaining.

Leroy Sane, on as a substitute after injury, might have won it late on for Germany but was forced extremely wide as he rounded Simon and could not find a finish or produce a cutback.

Spain face Japan on Thursday, while Germany play Costa Rica, needing to win and hoping La Roja do not lose.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

FOOTBALL

IN IMAGES: Argentina fans take over Spain’s cities after World Cup win

Thousands of Argentinians took to the streets of Madrid, Barcelona and other city centres across Spain to celebrate their national side’s victory against France in the World Cup final on Sunday.  

IN IMAGES: Argentina fans take over Spain's cities after World Cup win

Many of the roughly 100,000 Argentinians who have made Spain their home celebrated en masse the victory of la albiceleste until the early hours of Sunday night, packing squares, honking horns, chanting football songs and adorning everything in white and light blue. 

Argentina’s World Cup victory against France on penalties after an exhilarating 3-3 draw saw an explosion of joy among Argentinians the world around, and Spain was no exception. 

By midday in Madrid, there was a 50-metre queue outside nightclub Shoko, where Argentina fans gathered to watch their team on a big screen. 

When the winning penalty was scored, they exploded onto the streets, filling the Spanish capital’s Puerta del Sol square to the brim. 

Celebrations at times got out of hand, with some fans trying to climb the giant Christmas tree in Madrid’s iconic square.

Riot police had to be called in to assist and two people were arrested. 

In Barcelona, 10,000 people gathered at the city’s Arc de Triomf, lighting the sky red with flares and letting off fireworks, but fortunately there were no arrests or accidents reported.

Barcelona and Argentina share a common idol in Lionel Messi, who scored two goals in the final and was chosen player of the tournament. 

In Valencia, Argentina fans gathered in front of the town hall to celebrate. In Málaga, they gathered at River Plate’s youth academy branch. Similar scenes were witnessed in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Seville, Bilbao and other cities across the territory.  

Spain’s cultural and linguistic links with Argentina run deep, as together with Italians, Spaniards made up the majority of the migrants that turned modern Argentina into a European melting pot in the late 19th century and early 20th century.

In more recent years, the trend has been reversed, with large migration flows every time an economic crisis hits the Argentine peso.

So far in 2022, more than 33,000 Argentine nationals have moved to Spain, the highest number in 14 years. 

Many of them have Italian passports, which partly explains why the biggest foreign population group in Barcelona are Italians. 

But under Spain’s new Grandchildren Law, many thousands of Argentine nationals will be able to claim Spanish citizenship, in plenty of cases without having ever lived in Spain.

SHOW COMMENTS