After the France team this Tuesday against Australia (4-1), it was the turn of another big European team to compete in this 2022 World Cup. Indeed, the Germans of Hansi Flick faced, in the early afternoon, Japan at the Khalifa International Stadium. The German coach thus lined up a very offensive team since Musiala, Müller, Gnabry and Havertz started together.
It didn’t take long to find the Mannschaft we knew, stealing the ball and opting for long shots from the feet of Gündogan and Kimmich. But they were almost showered quickly since on a loss of ball from the middle of Manchester City, Ito crossed for Maeda, who scored, but was signaled, quite logically offside (8th). Afterwards, it was more complicated for the Japanese. Kimmich tried from a distance, but fell on a good Gonda (20th) just like Gündogan less than ten minutes later (28th). But in the end, the Germans would find the fault. On a beautiful turnaround, Kimmich found Raum. The left side was first mowed down by Gonda, then tackled by the latter. The referee designated the penalty spot and Gündogan converted easily (1-0, 33rd). Just before the break, the second but the German was refused for an offside, this time by Kaï Havertz (45th +5).
Japan overturned everything
Upon returning from the locker room, the Japanese grew bolder, but the Germans remained the most dangerous, thus Ilkay Gündogan, who could have shifted Serge Gnabry, determined to strike and hit the post (60th). The Mannschaft was not immune to some defensive mistakes, but the Japanese were far too imprecise. On the other hand, the 70th minute was the start of the Gonda show. Not really imperial in the first period, he won in quick succession in front of Hofmann, then twice in front of Gnabry in a rather surreal way, but oh so important.
But Neuer was not left out. After a magnificent control of the chest, Kubo struck in full surface. The shot was blocked by Rüdiger then pushed back spectacularly by Neuer before Ito, who had the but wide open, shot over (72nd). But it was getting too close and Doan in a good way after a discount not really inspired by Neuer (1-1, 75th). But by dint of playing ball, the Germans were going to be punished. On a free kick that seemed innocuous, Asano was launched behind the defense, well covered by Süle for the offside, played Schlotterbeck and sent a mine in the angle half closed by Neuer (2-1, 83rd). The Germans then all threw their forces out of the battle. But, despite the seven minutes of additional time and final assaults, the Japanese overthrew Germany well and offered us the second surprise of this start to the World Cup after Argentina’s defeat against Saudi Arabia.