Mexico vs. Germany: Score and Reaction from 2016 Olympic Men's Soccer

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 4, 2016

Serge Gnabry (#17) of Germany celebrates with teammates his goal against Mexico during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games mens first round Group C football match Mexico vs Germany, at the Arena Fonte Nova Stadium in Salvador, Brazil on August 4, 2016. / AFP / NELSON ALMEIDA        (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
NELSON ALMEIDA/Getty Images

Matthias Ginter salvaged a point for Germany, which opened group-stage play at the Summer Olympics with a 2-2 draw against Mexico on Thursday in Salvador, Brazil.

Ginter headed home a Julian Brandt corner kick in the 78th minute to cancel out Rodolfo Pizarro's go-ahead goal.

SB Nation's Fear the Wall may have taken its appreciation of the Borussia Dortmund defender overboard:

Ginter's goal was the second time on the night that Germany had come from behind after Oribe Peralta's opener in the 52nd minute.

Peralta looked to have a great opportunity to test German goalkeeper Timo Horn in the 27th minute. Instead, the Club America man passed the ball across to teammate Hirving Lozano, who, rather than taking a first-time shot, hesitated and allowed Horn to get into position for the save.

The brief stretch of action was a microcosm of the first half. Neither Mexico nor Germany could find a breakthrough in the final third. The Germans didn't register a single shot on goal, while their opponents mustered only two.

On the whole, ESPN FC's Tom Marshall was happy with what he saw from El Tri:

With Mexico creating little from open play, it capitalized on a corner kick early in the second half. Michael Perez's delivery into the box found an unmarked Peralta. Brandt attempted to make a goal-line clearance, but the most he could do was head the ball off the underside of the bar and into the back of the net.

Goal.com's Jon Arnold made note of Peralta's record in the Olympics:

The 32-year-old scored four times in six games as Mexico captured the gold medal in 2012. He also registered a brace in El Tri's 2-1 win over Brazil in the gold-medal game. Something about the Olympics brings out the best in Peralta.

Mexico had little time to enjoy its 1-0 lead, though, as Serge Gnabry equalized for Germany in the 58th minute. Niklas Sule created the goal with a brilliant through ball from midfield. The pass hit the Arsenal winger perfectly in stride just outside the 18-yard box, and he cut inside to his right before beating Mexico goalkeeper Alfredo Talavera at the far post.

DW Sports' Stefan Bienkowski thought Gnabry was one of Germany's better players to that point in the match:

A failure to properly deal with aerial crosses into the box became an issue again for Germany in the 61st minute. Marco Bueno's diving header caromed off the crossbar, and the ball fortuitously bounced to the foot of Pizarro, who tapped it in to put El Tri ahead 2-1.

While the goal was somewhat lucky, ESPN FC's Jessica Lopez thought it was Mexico's just reward for an impressive attacking move:

Lozano should've put El Tri up 3-1 in the 74th minute, but much like with his first-half chance, the Pachuca winger waited too long in the box—transferring the ball from his left foot to his right. Horn made the save and eliminated the danger.

The failed opportunity proved pivotal, with Ginter's equalizer coming minutes later. ESPN FC's Cesar Hernandez provided an accurate description of how Mexico supporters reacted as the match unfolded:

Mexico and Germany each went to the top of Group C as a result of Thursday's draw, before South Korea's 8-0 drubbing of Fiji in the same section.

The result will be more frustrating for El Tri, who threw away a leading position twice. A win would've given them one foot in the quarterfinals, with their next group-stage match coming against Fiji on Sunday. Instead, everything may hinge on how they do against South Korea on Aug. 10.

Germany coach Horst Hrubesch won't be thrilled with his team's overall performance, but one point is better than none. The Germans didn't surrender any ground to Mexico in the standings, either.

South Korea will be a tricky opponent Sunday, but a victory for the Germans would go a long way toward securing progression to the next round.

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