The usually popular coach Joachim Löw had guided the team to a 4:0 advantage in the first 60 minutes. But in the half hour that followed, Sweden managed to sink four goals and even the score – seen as a victory by the Scandinavians. Germany’s 30 minute fall from grace was the talking point of the national press on Wednesday morning.
Der Spiegel news magazine kicked off the criticism with the headline “60 minutes of heaven, 30 minutes of hell.” It was not often, the article said, that Löw was left lost for words and could not explain what went on in the last half hour to allow Sweden four goals.
Populist daily Bild covered its front page with a direct attack on the captain, “Jogi that was moronic,” it said. In the sports section, the headline screamed “Stupidity record.” The article continued to say that Germany “had never squandered away a 4:0 lead before.”
In keeping with the feeling that the draw was actually a defeat, the Süddeutsche Zeitung daily ran the headline “a victory grotesquely given away.” It was a rare occurrence, it said, that Germany let a game it is clearly dominating, slip out of its hands.
The Berliner Zeitung regional paper echoed this thought with “4:4 defeat”. It paired this with a painful online photo gallery. Another of the capital’s papers the Tagesspiegel called the match a “return to the times of ragged football.”
In Die Welt daily, reporting got personal with the headline “the ugly face of the national team.” News magazine Stern’s website weighed in with “horror show in the capital.”
Regardless of how dismayed the draw left Germany’s viewing public, state broadcaster ARD likely rejoiced after 13.61 million people tuned in to watch the match.