Thursday, July 25, 2024

Germany 2-0 Denmark: Havertz, Musiala book hosts´ place in quarter-finals

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 29 Jun 2024

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Euro 2024 hosts Germany booked their place in the quarter-finals, with Kai Havertz and Jamal Musiala scoring in a 2-0 victory over Denmark on Saturday.

The tournament’s joint-leading scorer, Musiala, curled in a wonderful strike after Havertz’s spot-kick to send Denmark crashing out of the tournament.

Nico Schlotterbeck and Joachim Andersen were earlier denied openers following VAR reviews early in each half, while the game was also paused for close to half an hour amid a torrential downpour in Dortmund.

At the end of a dramatic encounter, Denmark are heading home while Germany have set up a meeting with either Spain or Georgia in Stuttgart on Friday.

Denmark got an early let-off as Schlotterbeck saw what would have been his first international goal ruled out for a foul by Joshua Kimmich in the build-up, after the defender headed home from a corner inside four minutes.

Germany kept the pressure on, with Kasper Schmeichel making a string of fine saves to keep out Kimmich, Schlotterbeck and Kai Havertz before Antonio Rudiger smothered Christian Eriksen’s shot at the other end.

A heavy storm brought the first half to a halt after 35 minutes but a near-30-minute break only revitalised Germany, with Havertz’s header smothered by Schmeichel before Schlotterbeck sent another effort just wide.

On the stroke of half-time, the hosts’ defence was cut wide open, but Manuel Neuer rushed out to smother Rasmus Hojlund’s first-time effort.

There was more drama early in the second half as Andersen, who coolly drilled his strike into the back of the net, was also denied a first international goal for a tight offside call against Thomas Delaney.

At the other end, the defender was then penalised as David Raum’s cross struck his arm in the box, and with a penalty awarded after a VAR review, Havertz slotted into the bottom-right corner.

Havertz looked sure to double his tally minutes later after a lovely bit of skill to get in behind Denmark, only to dink his shot over Schmeichel and wide of the far post, while Neuer stood tall to deny Hojlund as Denmark chased an equaliser.

However, Germany got their all-important second through Musiala in the 68th minute, moving it upfield in three passes before the youngster curled in his third goal of Euro 2024.

Florian Wirtz thought he had added some gloss to the scoreline in stoppage time when he poked the ball into an empty net, but he became the third man to be denied by an offside decision.

Havertz closing in on greats

Havertz made a crucial impact for Germany in the second half, despite missing a host of golden opportunities throughout the game.

His penalty was his fourth goal at the Euros overall, with only Jurgen Klinsmann and Mario Gomez, who each found the back of the net five times in the competition, scoring more for Die Nationalelf at the tournament.

He could have moved to the top of that list against Denmark, having five shots in total and missing two big chances.

Meanwhile, Neuer made yet more history at the Euros, making his 19th appearance in the competition to overtake Bastian Schweinsteiger’s national record of 18.

Denmark struggle again

Group C was notoriously short on goalmouth action, with Denmark responsible for two of the seven goals scored, and they continued that trend against Germany.

Before this game, Eriksen was directly involved in 55% of Denmark’s 42 shots in that group, attempting 10 and creating 13. He was the creative spark for them in Dortmund too, having (two) shots and creating a further (three) chances.

It has been a tough run at major tournaments for the Red and Whites lately, having only won three of their last 16 matches (seven draws, six losses), with this loss stretching their winless streak to eight such games.

The last time Denmark faced Germany in the knockout stages of a major tournament, they beat them 2-0 in the Euro 1992 final. While Kasper Hjulmand would have hoped that was a good omen, it did not turn out to be the case.

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