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Germany beaten by Japan (2-1) and already in difficulty

Second major surprise at the World Cup: after Argentina beaten by Saudi Arabia, Germany cracked Wednesday 2-1 against Japan, daring and without complex, in the first match of group E, in Doha. Were the Germans distracted by their pre-match “political” gesture? In protest at Fifa’s threats of sanctions to prevent the wearing of the inclusive “One Love” armband, captain Manuel Neuer and his teammates ostensibly put their hands in front of their mouths in the traditional team photo which precedes the kick. sending.

Germany already in great difficulty

The men of coach Hansi Flick, true to themselves, displayed their convictions. Failing to display their sporting certainties. Because the Nationalmannschaft has suffered. And has already got into great difficulty in a difficult group where Spain and Costa Rica also play, opposed at 5 p.m. From the outset, the “Samurai Blue” offered the quadruple world champions a free warning, in the form of a goal by Daizen Maeda – disallowed for offside – in the 8th minute, after a against led at lightning speed.

Opposite, Germany took a good 20 minutes to enter their match, but they gradually took control, and we could think, half an hour into the game, that the dynamics of the match had changed. in his favour. After clear chances from Antonio Rüdiger (17th), Joshua Kimmich (20th) and Ilkay Gündogan (27th, 29th), Japanese goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda jostled David Raum in the box: Gündogan converted the penalty, concretizing the German domination ( 1-0, 33rd).

Everything changed in a few minutes

The second period started at the same pace, with in particular a powerful shot but above the bar, from the nugget of Bayern Munich Jamal Musiala (51st), and another shot on the outside of the post of Gündogan, superbly served by Musiala (60th). Germany seemed calm, but at 1-0, the exploit remained within reach of Japan, and the players of the land of the rising sun never gave up.

Everything changed in a few minutes. First when the Germans saw four shots (Hoffmann and Gnabry three times) repelled in seconds by spectacular parries from Gonda in the 73rd minute. We will talk again in the next few days about the absence of a real goalscorer! Almost on the counter, Manuel Neuer saved the country, with a headline of which the 36-year-old doorman has the secret, while the Japanese substitutes on the bench had already risen, seeing the ball at the bottom.

It was just a postponement. On the following action, Ritsu Doan, the FC Friborg player, equalized on the arrival of a collective combination which made the German defense dizzy (1-1, 75th). Eight minutes later, another Japanese from the Bundesliga, Takuma Asano (Bochum) gave the coup de grace with a powerful shot under the bar (2-1, 83rd). The Japanese could exult, and the Germans bow their heads. In 2018, at the World Cup in Russia, the Mannschaft had already been beaten by an Asian team, South Korea (2-0) and sadly eliminated in the first round.

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