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Thanks to a late goal from the talented Mario Gomez, Germany was able to snag the victory against Portugal with 17 minutes left in the match, leaving them tied at the top of the Group B standings with Denmark. In a match that brought a lot of chances from both sides, Germany were the only ones to capitalize, which leaves Portugal in a tricky situation at the bottom of the table with the equally unlucky Holland.
The match was heated from the beginning, with the first shot on goal coming a minute into the game off of Germany’s Gomez, which was easily saved by Portugal’s Rui Patricio. The German fans were also showing their emotions towards the opposing team by throwing empty water bottles at Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo as he was trying to setup a corner kick in the fourth minute.
Germany’s lineup for the match came as a surprise, as seven of the starting players are teammates on the Bundesliga side Bayern Munich. This seems to have had an impact on the match, since Germany was able to create many chances in the offensive half throughout the entire match. Portugal came out on top according to the stat sheet, getting seven of their eleven shots on goal compared to the four out of twelve shots that Germany were able to create.
The first half of the match finished without any changes on the scoreboard, giving a sense that the match would end with a goalless draw. This would play out well for Holland, giving them a better chance of climbing back from their 1-0 loss to Denmark earlier in the day.
The second half came with just as much intensity as the first. Both Germany and Portugal’s offense were playing creative soccer, which formed many chances for both sides. Portugal managed to test the German goalkeeper Manuel Neur more with several attempts on the goal.
Germany was finally able to capitalize in the last 20 minutes of the match after a ball was crossed into the box, deflected off a Portugal player, and then found its way to Mario Gomez. Gomez was able to head the ball past the goalkeeper into the opposite corner to give Germany the 1-0 lead. Mario Gomez was struggling to finish any of his shots throughout the second half, and was about to be substituted for Miroslav Klose before he managed to head in the game-winning goal.
No matter how many attempts the Portuguese had to tie the game up in the remaining 10 minutes of play, they were unable to break down the German defense. Germany faces off against Holland next on Wednesday, while Portugal faces Denmark that same day.