Germany click at Euros
Germany finally clicked into gear at the European Championship, with a little help from defending champions Portugal.
The Portuguese became the first team to score two own-goals in one game at the continental tournament, giving the Germans a 4-2 victory yesterday and ending fears of another group-stage exit.
“Altogether it was a class performance. Great attitude, great morale. We deserved to win by this amount,” said Germany coach Joachim Löw, whose team lost its opening game to France. “I expected that we would do the things that we didn’t do so well against France better.”
Cristiano Ronaldo put Portugal in the lead in the 15th minute against the run of play. It was his first goal against Germany and his third at Euro 2020. It also extended his all-time tournament record to 12 goals.
But defenders Rúben Dias and Raphaël Guerreiro gave Germany the lead before half-time by scoring into their own net.
Kai Havertz and Robin Gosens then got two more for Germany early in the second half — becoming the first players within the squad to score at a European Championship.
“It’s magic,” said Gosens, who was playing in his ninth game for Germany.
Diogo Jota got one back for Portugal in the 67th after Ronaldo acrobatically saved a free kick from going out.
The German supporters sang “Oh wie ist das schön” (Oh how lovely this is) as they watched their team dominate the game from start to finish — something they hadn’t seen in years of underachievement.
“When you have such good attacking scenes, the kettle boils,” said Thomas Müller, who has yet to score in 13 games at the tournament. “Now we have the three points that we absolutely needed. We shouldn’t get carried away. You can feel a little bit of euphoria, but we also have to remain objective.”
The 2014 World Cup champions had been looking for a good showing at Euro 2020 to make up for their first-round exit at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Both Portugal and Germany now have three points in Group F, one behind current World Cup champions France, which were surprisingly held to a 1-1 draw by Hungary in Budapest.
Hungary has one point and will next play Germany on Wednesday in Munich. France will play Portugal in Budapest.
Hungary 1-1 France
Portugal 2-4 Germany
Spain 1-1 Poland