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Germany beat Ghana to advance to final 16

AFP/The Local · 23 Jun 2010, 22:53

Published: 23 Jun 2010 22:27 GMT+02:00
Updated: 23 Jun 2010 22:53 GMT+02:00

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The win gave Germany top spot in Group D and a showdown with Fabio Capello's England in Bloemfontein on Sunday while Ghana face Group C winners the USA in Rustenburg on Saturday.

Özil's superb strike from the edge of the penalty area on the hour mark proved decisive while Australia's 2-1 win over Serbia in the other Group D match was academic.

"We knew it would hard work against Ghana," said Özil. "I could have already made it 1-0 in the first-half, so I was a bit annoyed with myself. I was disappointed, but I knew that I would score a goal."

For the first time in World Cup history, two brothers lined up against each other as Manchester City's new signing Jerome Boateng came it at left-back for Germany to face elder half-brother Kevin-Prince Boateng of Ghana.

"I'm glad we won, but I'm also happy Ghana made it through," said Jerome, who fell out with Kevin-Prince after his brother injured Germany captain Michael Ballack last month in the FA Cup final in England.

Brazilian-born striker Cacau, who started for the suspended Miroslav Klose, had the game's first chance when he was freed on the right wing, but fired straight at Ghana goalkeeper Richard Kingson.

Ghana had a chance after 15 minutes when Kwadwo Asamoah played the ball into the box for Asamoah Gyan, but Bastian Schweinsteiger stepped in to snuff out the attack.

Both teams had clear chances around the 25 minute mark in a frantic period in front of a 83,391-strong crowd at Soccer City.

First Ghana's Andre Ayew broke free into penalty area, but took one touch too many, then Germany's Özil went one-on-one with Kingson only for the Ghana goalkeeper to make the save.

Germany captain Philipp Lahm then saved a Gyan header off the line.

Ayew picked up the first booking on 39 minutes for a tackle from behind on Cacau, while Germany's Thomas Müller was also booked on 43 minutes for a clumsy tackle on 43 minutes.

Germany spent the first five minutes after the break in the Ghana half, but Asamoah squandered a golden chance to take the lead when he fired at German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer who managed to get a glove to the shot on 52 minutes.

With an hour gone, Özil calmed Germany's nerves with a left-footed goal from the edge of the penalty area which finally beat Kingson to give his side the lead.

Ghana then poured forward and a shot by John Pantsil was blocked by Jerome Boateng less than a minute later, while Lahm pulled off a goal-saving block on

Story continues below…

an Ayew shot which was headed goal bound moments later.

The last 20 minutes were a tense affair as Ghana constantly tested the German defence, but Joachim Löw's team held firm to maintain their country's record of having never failed to qualify from the group stages at a World Cup.

"It was an intense match and wasn't the top perfomance from either team," said Löw. "We didn't play as precise as we could have, but it's a young team. We're happy to have won."

He said his side would keenly awaiting its next opponent.

"It's always special to play England," he said. "We'll have to raise our game, but we look forward to it."

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

23:02 June 23, 2010 by Nur Ainne Johar
I'm just proud with these young players, I'm so touched by their spirit. It is so right, that's somehow the Germany players will ALWAYS get through to the next around. And gosh Ozil, how I wish you could see how happy I am for you and the team, thank you!!!
23:08 June 23, 2010 by Bushdiver
Yes, the Germans got through to the next round but were far from playing great. I think that Ghana outplayed the Germans in the first half but the ermans did play somewhat better in the second half. Congradulations to Germany but they will have to start playing better if they want to continue on. England should be no problem but then one never knows.
01:00 June 24, 2010 by maxbrando
J. Lowe has taken a tremendous chance in selecting this team. He has succeeded. Getting out of the qualifying round is formidable challenge. Conratulations to these boys!!! Get it on with England and show what a rwally miniature team they really are. All due to the braggadicio of ther beer and tabloid press egging their drunken fans on.
01:32 June 24, 2010 by Frank_furter
Maxbrando.. Nice bit of stereotyping there, not all England supporters are "drunken fans" nor are German fans sausage sucking neo natzi's and as for being a minature team ...well we will see on sunday won't we !
02:15 June 24, 2010 by Frenemy
"sausage sucking", Mr. "Frank_furter"??!!

08:30 June 24, 2010 by LancashireLad
I agree with Frank_furter. England's performance can be extremely variable. Our first two games were hopeless but from what I read of the commentary on the BBC web site (didn't see the game live) we sharpened up a bit for our game with Solvenia. Sunday's game really is an open book.

Let's just not let it get to penalties OK? We have a bit of a blind spot there, and if anyone knows that, the Germans do :(

Another point. I have read varying opinions on this forum on the subject of integration within Germany and in that vein I can only say "Well done, ízil."
14:09 June 24, 2010 by Dizz
Germany's goose saved by a Turk. I love it!
14:14 June 24, 2010 by Bushdiver
@ LancashireLad ............England's performance can be extremely variable. Not Really. For the most part they play about as poorly as the US. I guess both your country and mine will be departing Africa after the weekend.
14:31 June 24, 2010 by herman_eiser
I fear our team is to weak to beat the English, We are too young and inexperienced. We have shown some good form but i don't think we have the players or the class that the english currenty do.

Maybe in a few years we will have a better chance.
15:15 June 24, 2010 by LancashireLad
I'll tell you what hurts the English team more than anything ... the media.

After Germany lost in the final of the 2008 Euro cup, the headlines the following day were "We're still proud of you, lads!"

Don't think I have *ever* seen that in the UK press ....
15:17 June 25, 2010 by marimay
@ Dizz,

Me too! :D

It was my exact thought when he made the goal.
17:09 June 25, 2010 by Der Grenadier aus Aachen
I am glad that Germany's lackluster performance at the Cup is still greater than England's lackluster performance.

So, we should be expecting a mediocre win.
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