Perhaps the biggest game of the group stages, Germany vs. Portugal delivered on certain fronts, and failed to deliver on others. It was somewhat of a boring affair and lacked that certain level of excitement you’d expect from the German squad.
As predicted, though, Germany did emerge victorious, although Portugal did press them hard, especially in the closing stages of the game.
Here are the ratings for the German players.
The Bayern Munich goalkeeper was troubled at times during the match. However, he rose to the occasion and dealt with threats quite effectively.
In the dying stages of the game, Nelson Oliveira controlled the ball beautifully and laid the ball for Silvestre Varela. The only thing required of Valera was that he lift the ball into the net; however, he chose to drill it instead. Manuel Neuer made himself large and thwarted the ball from going into the back of the net and ensured all three points for Die Mannschaft.
The German defence did look shoddy at times and was penetrated too easily, especially by the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo. However, all of them performed admirably, especially Mats Hummels who is my pick for the man-of-the-match. Despite having had a nightmare of a game against the Swiss, Hummels was picked ahead of Per Mertesacker. He was solid, was at the right-spot at a number of occasions and gave the Portuguese players little room to carve a shot.
Holger Badstuber had a decent game. There were times when he looked to be beaten too easily, but he made a crucial save at the dying stages.
Jerome Boateng also played well, and he looked rock solid at right back, thwarting many attempts by Ronaldo.
Philipp Lahm as usual was his industrious self, although he could have offered more in the attacking third. He lost concentration sometimes and his link up play was not his usual best, but Nani was kept relatively cool due to the captain’s performance.
Mats Hummels: 9.5/10 (Man-of-the-match)
Holger Badstuber: 6.5/10
Jerome Boateng: 7/10
Philipp Lahm: 7/10
The midfield looked to be crowded at times. Nevertheless, Germany was proficient in moving the ball around, although some of their long balls seemed to be way off.
Both Bastian Schweinsteiger and Sami Khedira had great games though. Both dominated midfield, and the latter especially gave a resounding performance. He even showed a bit of technical flair now and then, guiding past defences and setting up the more attack minded players.
Schweinsteiger had his usual game—holding and distributing the ball with ease and personifying composure at the center of the park.
Sami Khedira: 8/10
Bastian Schweinsteiger: 7/10
Mesut Özil did not have the greatest of games against Portugal. Although his passing and technical abilities were showcased, he failed to provide that extra bit of spark to unlock Portugal. More will be desired from him during crucial encounters.
Arsenal’s new acquisition, Lukas Podolski, was a bit wayward with his shots and his finishing was below average. In the 30th minute, he found himself free in the center of the box, but failed to show composure and slot the ball home. He, instead, blasted the ball over the bar.
Like Podolski, Müller too was unimpressive for me, and one of the many people that made the game a bit frustrating to watch at first. His link-up play with other Germans also left a lot to be desired.
Mesut Özil: 6.5/10
Lukas Podolski: 5.5/10
Thomas Müller: 6/10
He did not assert his presence upon the game as frequently as he would have liked to, but he looked highly dangerous when he found space. He scored a great, disallowed goal off of a Sami Khedira dazzling play, and in the end scored a perfect headed goal.
He found himself at the end of a deflected cross and headed the ball away from the keeper into the bottom right corner.
Mario Gomez: 9/10
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