Germany V/S Serbia
Spectacular Serbian defence tamed high flying Germans
Serbia sent favorites Germany down to their first loss in world cup group-stages since 1986.After a highflying win against Australia, Germany were on the up. However, Serbia coming to this match after their loss to Ghana showed why they had the meanest defence during qualifying rounds by taming German attack. Serbian keeper Stojkovic had to make only three saves during the match explains the lack of creativity shown by Germans. Serbians had more clear-cut chances to score. Both the teams had almost even possession.
First half was quite a drab affair as both teams struggled to make impression in the attacking front. However, Serbians were adept in their defence and they did not give much space and time for Germans to play their expansive football. At times, they had 10 players complimenting each other in defence. Major part of German attacks was through some long shots. In the 7th minute Podolski after receiving a great ball from Muller, shot the ball wide of the target. Referee hogged the limelight by flashing six yellow cards in the first half to klose, Ivanovic, Kolarov khediera and Lahm. In the 37th minute, he sent off Klose after showing the second yellow card for tackling down Stojkovic from behind. In the 38th minute Krasic produced a dangerous cross towards the goalmouth, which Zigic flicked down towards Jovanovich. He scored it comfortably to add salt to the wound of Germans who were down to 10 players. Serbia grew in confidence with their lead. In the injury time, Ozil’s took a good corner, which induced a save from Stojkovic, and Khedira drilled a shot from the rebound but it hit the post.
In the second half Serbia kept their defensive discipline as in the first half and did not let Germany to get back into the match. Schweinsteiger and Muller had a rather subdued match. Podolski had seven shots on goal without creating any real threat to the keeper. Germany tried to attack bit more even though they were down by one player. In the 53rd minute Schweinsteiger blasted a shot at goal which keeper saved. In the 57th minute Ozil released Podolski with a through ball. Podolski went past his marker and shot it wide. Podolski got into a good position and shot the ball into the side netting in the 58th minute. In a moment of madness, Vidic flew in air and handled the ball inside his own penalty box and he received a yellow card for it. Germany got a lifeline with a penalty kick. Stojkovic guessed it right and he saved the penalty from Podolski. It turned out to be match-winning effort for Serbia.
In the 59th minute, Krasic moved past the defenders from right flank and gave a great ball to Jovanovic, but his shot agonizingly banged at the goal post. Germany brought Cacau, Marin, and Gomes to go for an all out attack. In 80th minute, Vidic gave a long ball from half which zigic flicked on, but substitute Kacar hit that over the post. Germany kept attacking and Serbia resisted it even though they were tired. In the 89th minute Lahm had a cross/shot which keeper saved. Serbia had a scare in the injury time as Germany pushed hard for a goal and German players scrambled for ball inside, which ended with Stankovic’s injury. It seemed that Stankovic fouled a German player and German coach was fuming that referee did not give a penalty. This win has brought Serbia back in frame for second round qualification. Germany, Ghana, and Serbia have three points apiece in Group D.