Sweden vs. Germany: 6 Things We Learned

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Sweden vs. Germany: 6 Things We Learned
Image courtesy of Times-Gazette.com

It was fireworks aplenty to see off another successful World Cup campaign for Germany as they came from behind to beat Sweden 5-3 on Tuesday night. 

Although Germany were far from full strength and playing against a very good Swedish side, the excellence and sheer dominance that we've seen from Joachim Low's side over the course of this campaign dictated that anything but a win would have been a disappointment for the potential World Cup winners.  

Alas, despite making hard work of it over the course of the game, the victory was indeed Germany's to saviour as they finished atop of Group C with just two points dropped over the course of 10 games.

Yet Germany made hard work of the first half, when an unlikely opening goal came about in the sixth minute thanks to an outstanding through ball from Sebastian Larsson that found itself at the feet of an oncoming Tobias Hysen, who had the time and space to peg Manuel Neuer in goals. 

Despite that, the visitors continued their blase approach to the game with a constant degree of pressure that had been expected of them from the very first minute. Then Sweden scored again, this time through the exploitation of a slow offside trap and the right foot of Alexander Kacaniklic. Germany were now in trouble.

Then came Mezut Ozil.

He scored with an ounce of luck and a ton of class like he has done on so many occasions for his country in this campaign. The sides went in at half-time with Sweden leading by a goal, but the winds had already changed and Germany were in pursuit. 

The second half was then another 45 minutes of sheer drama. If Sweden had indeed sucker-punched the Germans in the preliminary stages of the game, it was now Germany's chance to really dig in for a comprehensive win.

Mario Gotze's introduction during the break, at the expense of a tired-looking Thomas Muller, was a stroke of genius as he scored just eight minutes in to the new half. Then came Andre Schurrle again, again and again with a hat-trick that'll stick in the mind for months to come. 

Sweden did indeed grab some solace from a wonderful volley in the 69th minute from Hysen as he again peeled of Jerome Boateng to swing yet another shot past Neuer in goals. Upon replay the striker was clearly offside but few bothered to protest. There was only ever going to be one winner in this game and that was table-topping Germany. 

 

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