Updates from Wednesday, June 18
Germany has suffered a blow as it prepares for its match against Ghana, with Mats Hummels' fitness in doubt (via Cristian Nyari):
Mats Hummels is doubtful for the Ghana. Had to be taken to the hospital yesterday for his thigh injury. Doing individual training.— Cristian Nyari (@Cnyari) June 18, 2014
Germany's World Cup started masterfully in the first half of the opening match against Portugal, but might have been dealt a huge blow in the second with an injury to Mats Hummels.
The Borussia Dortmund defender went up for the ball and came down hard on his right leg, as The Sun Football on Twitter notes:
They're dropping like flies. Now Mats Hummels hobbles off and is replaced #GERvsPOR— The Sun - Football (@TheSunFootball) June 16, 2014
PhysioRoom.com passed along Hummels' updated condition following the match:
Loew confirms Mats Hummels picked up a thigh injury which will be assessed; however the early prognosis suggests it isn't too serious #GER— PhysioRoom.com News (@physioroom) June 16, 2014
The injury occurred just after an eventful first half for Germany and Hummels. Sandwiched between two first-half goals for Thomas Mueller, Hummels struck on a header off a corner kick that found the back of the net to put his country up 2-0 in the 32nd minute.
ESPN Stats & Info provides a look at the goal for Hummels:
Mats Hummels with a headed goal to put Germany up 2-0. It was Germany's 36th headed WC goal since 1966, no other team has more than 19.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) June 16, 2014
Hummels was immediately replaced by Shkodran Mustafi in the match during the 73rd minute, but his return for the rest of the tournament has not been announced.
While he might not miss any time, the injury for Hummels is still a rough one for Germany, as Clark Whitney of Bleacher Report notes:
Hummels' injury didn't look too serious, but it's a real worry. Even without the goal, he's been absolutely top-class today— Clark Whitney (@Mr_Bundesliga) June 16, 2014
Moving forward, the Germans must face off with both Ghana and the United States. Though both teams are ranked lower than Germany, having Hummels on the pitch will be of the utmost importance.
Going against a fast team in the Black Stars, Germany simply can't afford to have Hummels miss any time. But after a decisive start against Portugal, Germany have time to let the defender recover before facing Ghana.
For Team USA, they will already face a Portugal team without defender Pepe due to a red card and could match up with a hobbled Hummels when they take on Germany. The U.S. will need to down Ghana before facing either team, but might find more room on the offensive side against the two clubs.
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