England Edged out by Weak Germans

[Reuters]

England 0-1 Germany

England made it two defeats in two matches last night with a 1-0 defeat to a weak Germany side. The goal was a clever header from captain Per Mertesacker, the centre-back of Arsenal.

The Three Lions were much more dangerous than their opponents in the first 15 minutes, but couldn’t even muster an on target shot. The first chance saw Wayne Rooney’s long-range header land on the roof of the net. It was to be a quiet night for Germany’s 33-year-old debutant goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller. The Germans slowly got themselves into the game, and used their set pieces well, unlike England. With 38 minutes on the clock, Mertesacker headed from close range to the front post, but Joe Hart miraculously saved not only it, but its follow-up as well. The ball went out for another corner, and as it was headed clear but Toni Kroos sent the ball back in. It met Per Mertesacker on the head perfectly and with no help at all from Chris Smalling, Germany went ahead.

The only other decent chance in the first period saw Steven Gerrard’s far out effort also end up on the net’s roof. Then in the second half, Mario Götze’s mazy run was not tracked by the English defence, and when it landed, from close in, at the feet of Marco Reus, Joe Hart produced another outstanding save.

Then came the best chance for England. As Townsend collected the ball on the right wing, from Jagielka’s long ball, he stepped past many German players, before smashing an extraordinarily long-shot onto the outside of the goalkeeper’s right post. He held his head, in disappointment. A few moment’s later, substitute Sidney Sam found Götze from close, whose shot was again expertly stopped by Hart, England’s best performer. The match ended with England on 45% of possession, a statistic that seemed to verve Germany’s way progressively through the match. It ended England 0 Germany 1.

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