Germany stun Sweden to claim first Group F win

Germany stun Sweden to claim first Group F win
epa06834520 Mikael Lustig (back) of Sweden in action against Marco Reus (front) of Germany during the FIFA World Cup 2018 group F preliminary round soccer match between Germany and Sweden in Sochi, Russia, 23 June 2018.

by Phumzile Ngcatshe

Saturday Jun 23, 2018. 22:16

Germany bounced back to beat Sweden 2-1 in their second Group F encounter of the 2018 FIFA World Cup at Fisht Stadium on Saturday night.

As early as the opening stages, Sweden had a brilliant opportunity to bag the lead in the 12th minute when they launched a quick counter attack, but Manuel Neuer was equal to the task and read the danger

However, the Germans would crack as their defence was exposed and Ola Toivonen scored, beating Neuer out of his line with a clever chip in the 32nd minute.

In their response, Thomas Muller forced a brilliant save from Robin Olsen, who was able to concede a corner kick from the lanky forward’s attempt.

Sweden nearly bagged their second goal, but Neuer was alert to deny Marcus Berg, whose header was directed at the far posts on the stroke of half time.

Die Mannschaft went to the tunnel trailing 1-0.

However, Joachim Low’s troops came back with purpose and netted three minutes into the second half through Marco Reus’ tap in from close range.

The Germans had an upper hand towards the 80th minute, but their failure to convert chances upfront let them down on more than four occasions, with Muller and Timo Werner firing blanks.

In the 82nd minute, the defending champions were reduced to 10 men when Jerome Boateng was shown a red card for second bookable offence.

It took the experience of Toni Kroos to grab the lead for Germany when he unleashed a brilliant free kick to ensure they claim their first win.

The result sees the champions moving to the second spot with three points and they will now hope to beat Korea Republic in their final match to book a spot in the next stage.

Meanwhile, the loss leaves the Swedes placed third with three points and they will now face Mexico in their final match in the group.

Germany: (0) 2 (Reus 48’, Kroos 90’)
Sweden: 1 (Toivonen 32’)

Germany: Neuer, Boateng, Hector (Brandt 86’), Kimmich, Rudiger, Rudy, Draxler (Gomez 46’), Kroos, Reus, Muller, Werner

Sweden: Olsen, Lustig, Granqvist, Augustinsson, Lindelof, Ekdal, Forsberg, Larsson, Claesson (Durmaz 74’), Toivonen (Guidetti 78’), Berg (Thelin 90’)

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