Germany knocked out of World Cup after South Korea loss
Germany knocked out of World Cup after South Korea loss
Mesut Ozil was on the bench for Germany in their 2-1 win over Sweden
28 June, 2018, 14:26
Defending world champions Germany crashed out of the World Cup after a shock 2-0 loss to South Korea on Wednesday, courtesy of two stoppage-time goals.
Germany would have progressed with a win at the Kazan Arena but barely looked capable of scoring against the Koreans, let alone going on to successfully defend the title they won in Brazil four years ago.
But when all seemed lost in Yekaterinburg, South Korea's Kim Young-Gwon broke through with a goal in stoppage time in Kazan to put South Korea up 1-0 over Germany, and a three-goal deficit might as well have been 30 for Mexico faithful.
It is the first time the Germans have gone out of the finals in the group stage and left head coach Low fielding questions over his future.
Sweden finish top of the group, with Mexico second, and South Korea third.
"Winning a game is always happy, and we always want to win", he said.
In some cases pressure like that can ignite a positive response, but for Germany the wheels were set to come off, and properly. A part of his aura was lost in Russian Federation, where his team never looked as good on the pitch as he did on that fateful morning jog. "We have to apologise for that".
On social media, fans depicted Kim in the style of a Mexican saint, created mashups of the South Korean and Mexican flags and digitally added the Korean flag to El Zocalo, the main square in Mexico City.
Son Heung-min bursts into tears after match against Germany.
Loew brought on substitutes Mario Gomez and Thomas Mueller on either side of the 60-minute mark but his players kept giving the ball away, with most of their attacking combinations lacking precision and speed.
Mats Hummels should have been their savour three minutes from time but his free header from inside the area bounced over.
"We will have to have discussions tomorrow, we'll see how it goes", said the 58-year-old.
"Today it was not easy but, yes, no team could get through easily".
It did its part by beating Germany, but Sweden's 3-0 victory over Mexico allowed the Swedes to win the group ahead of the second-place Mexicans.
"We were playing for the Korean people", said Cho, a cult figure at home for his orange bouffant. "I think we've grown since our last match".
Germany'sManuel Neuer makes a save from South Korea's Son Heung-min. Originally called out for offside, the goal was given after video review. It was a stunning result, both for the team that had come to Russian Federation as the world's No. 1 and for South Korea, which wasn't listed in the top 50 when this tournament began.
Mexico fans tensely watch as their team falls apart against Sweden. We had to take risks, we couldn't go on and wait and because of this we opened the doors in our defence.
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