header decal

News

24 Jun 2018

World Cup 2018: Germany 2-1 Sweden: 5 things we learned

World Cup 2018: Germany 2-1 Sweden: 5 things we
learned

Toni Kroos came up with a world-class strike deep into injury time to spare Germany's blushes, bringing them back from the brink of elimination.

REUTERS/Michael Dalder 

Toni Kroos' 95th-minute wonder-goal completed a second-half turnaround for reigning champions Germany as they snatched all three points against Sweden in Sochi. 

It was a deserved win for Joachim Low's side who move into second place, level on points with Sweden with one game to play. 

After dominating the early proceedings, it appeared as though the breakthrough was imminent as a white wall showed no sign of relenting. 

As the German threat grew, so too did the holes they left behind in their defence; the nightmares of Sunday a fresh recollection. 

Against the run of play, Ola Toivonen capitalised on a Kroos giveaway and neatly placed the ball over Manuel Neuer to give the Swedes the lead.

REUTERS/Michael Dalder

The Germans though never lost their heads, almost knowing the chances would eventually come. Starting the second half just as brightly as they did the first, it took only three minutes for them to get on even terms. 

Though there was slight fortune about the goal, having gone in off the knee of Marco Reus, it was no less than the Germans deserved. 

The inevitable onslaught ensued as chances rained on Robin Olsen's goal. As Sweden tried to take their chances on the break, Jerome Boateng's late challenge on Marcus Berg saw him receive his second yellow card and marching orders.

Being down to ten men made no difference to the Germans, though, as the hunt for a winning goal showed no signs of slowing down. After Timo Werner earned his side a free kick on the edge of the box in the 95th minute, time was up. 

A well-worked but simple routine afforded Kroos the opportunity to step up and curl a superb effort into the far corner past an outstretched Olsen, blowing Group F wide open, as Germany once again proved that they never give up.

Here are five things we learned from the game: