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FOOTBALL

Müller snares golden boot as top scorer

Germany's 20-year-old midfielder Thomas Müller has captured the “gold boot” award as the top goal-scorer at the World Cup in South Africa. He was also recognised as “best young player.”

Müller snares golden boot as top scorer
Photo: DPA

Müller’s five goals and three assists edged out Spain’s David Villa, the Netherlands’ Wesley Sneijder and Uruguay’s Diego Forlan – all three of whom also had five goals but fewer assists, meaning Müller won on a tie-break.

The Bayern Munich player’s effort was all the more remarkable as he played one fewer games than either Villa or Sneijder, both of whom took part in Sunday night’s uninspired final.

Uruguay’s Forlan claimed the “golden ball” as the tournament’s best player.

Müller went into the tournament with just two caps for Germany. He is the second straight German to win the golden boot after Miroslav Klose won in 2006, and also the second straight to win best young player after Lukas Podolski, also in 2006.

Müller’s superb performance has established him as one of Germany’s hottest young prospects in a team brimming with youthful players, whose average age is less than 25 – the country’s youngest World Cup squad since 1934.

Critically, back-to-back yellow cards in the knock-out stage and quarter-finals kept Müller out of the semi-final against eventual cup winners Spain, leaving fans to wonder whether Germany could have won the match with the young star on the field.

He is also the second Müller to win the top-scoring prize. Gerd Müller, known as “the nation’s bomber” took the golden boot in 1970, though he is no relation to the younger star.

“Of course I’m particularly happy to have won the golden boot 40 years after Gerd Müller,” the young Müller said on the team’s plane from South Africa back to Germany.

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FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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