The clash between Germany and Portugal had to be something special and at the Allianz Arena, both teams logged horns for a fascinating contest. The match lived up to the expectations of the fans and experts where Germany showed their firepower and bounced back.

After the 3-0 win against Hungary, Santos names an unchanged starting line-up. That meant Cristiano Ronaldo, who smashed numerous European Championship records last time out, would the line in front of Jota, Fernandes and Silva. Further back, scorer from the first game Raphael Guerreiro retains his place at left-back, while Dias also started at centre-back but he needed to be careful as he was just one booking away from suspension.

Just like his opposite man Santos, Low also named an unchanged starting-11 for the Germans’ second match. Despite scoring his own goal on his international return, Mats Hummels remains at centre-back, flanked either side by Ginter and Antonio Rudiger. Kai Havertz and Muller start in behind Serge Gnabry once more, meaning Leroy Sane had to stay patient.

It was the fifth meeting between Portugal and Germany at the European Championship; only Italy and Spain have faced each other on more occasions in the tournament – 6 times. It was also the sixth encounter between the two teams at major tournaments since Euro 2000, the most between two European nations over that period.

Germany threatened immediately, down their left wing. Havertz found the space to cross low into the danger area, but Portugal repelled the ball initially. It immediately came back down the same flank, and Havertz fouled Pepe that gave Portugal a free kick.

Germany’s passing was crisp and progressive in the opening exchanges. Ilkay Gundogan played a good forward pass into Thomas Muller’s feet as they look to build another attack.

The Portugal defensive shape was good.

The game was just five minutes old when Robin Gosens slammed in a fine finish at the far post after a cross from the right, but his teammate Gnabry was fractionally offside when the ball was played.

Anthony Taylor, the referee, waits for the VAR check and it’s chalked off.

Although Gnabry didn’t make contact with the ball, he tried to play it and was therefore active and it was no goal.

It was a tremendous finish by Gosens, who got over the top of a bouncing ball and drilled it into the net from an acute angle.

Germany certainly looked dangerous.

Ten minutes later, a German corner led to a counterattack by Portugal.

The ball was headed clear by Ronaldo and Bernardo Silva ran fast down the Portuguese right on a swift counterattack. Ronaldo, meanwhile, was burning down the middle of the pitch. Silva lofted a glorious pass to Diogo Jota, who was lurking on the left of the penalty area.

They were scrambling to get back, but there was no one at home in the German defence after they had pushed up for that corner. Smooth as you like, Jota took the ball down on his chest, let the ball down on goal, waits for the keeper to commit, and with the outside of his boot taps a sideways pass to Ronaldo, who has a simple task to pass the ball into an open goal from inside the six-yard box.

Manuel Neuer was hopelessly exposed by that ruthless counterattack.

It was a goal against the run of play because the Germans were dominating all the way.

Muller flicked a ball onto Gnabry just outside the area, who turned smartly away from Pepe and shaped to shoot.

Dias was the last line of defence and he dives in to make a challenge, a fierce 50-50 between the players inside the penalty area.

Pepe then has a word with the referee Anthony Taylor, wanting a yellow card for Gnabry for the challenge on Dias. Taylor did not react.

Gosens found a ton of space on the left again, meeting a deep cross on the volley and sending the ball fizzing across the six-yard box.

Havertz looked likely to score, but Dias put a leg out, and the ball deflected low into the far corner off the Portuguese defender.

The Germans were level and after a while, another ball fired across the six-yard box, this time from the right, after Müller had two goes at the crossing from the other side of the penalty area. Havertz tried to get on the end of the second Muller cross, but the ball flicked off the forward and beyond the goal. But it was fired back in by Kimmich, Guerreiro, like Dias, put a leg out this time, and the ball flew into the roof of the net from all of two yards out!

One own goal dashed the German efforts against France, but this time around, two own goals brought them back into the game and obviously, the German attacking intent deserved a lot of accolades – it melted the defending champions.

After the break, Germany got penned in the left-hand corner of the pitch by Portugal. Gnabry discovered himself with defensive duties to do and tried to hammer the ball clear. It was intercepted, and Ronaldo combines with the substitute Renato Sanches, before curling a dangerous cross to the far post, but the ball bounced out to safety.

After a sequence of smart short passes involving Havertz, Muller laid a good diagonal ball off to Gosens from a central position on the edge of the penalty area. Gosens again had acres of space on the German left to basically do what he likes – He sensibly chooses to fire one of those powerful, low crosses across the six-yard box and Havertz is on hand to bundle the ball over the line.

Then it was Gosens, who received a fine, deep curling cross from Joshua Kimmich, from the right. He rose to meet it with a simply beautiful header at the far post, generating oodles of power by cranking his neck back and forward, and slamming an accurate header into the top corner.


The Portuguese goose had been cooked and even though they pulled one back and reduced the deficit, but the day belonged to a German unit who played with enough aggressive intent and showed the world what they are – they mean business in this tournament.

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