Sunday, June 13, 2010
Game 8: Germany vs Australia
The socceroos went into the tournament with high hopes, but after tonights game, they will have to be fighting for their lives to survive. The situation becomes even more desperate now that Tim Cahill will have to serve a two match ban, after having received a straight red on a rather innocent tackle. Yes, it was from behind, but please, there was no malice in the challenge, a simple yellow-card would have done. I will say it again, poor Australia.
Germany were easily the better team in this match. Touted by the German media as not being a real contender this year, due to their young age and inexperience, the team were able to silence their critics with a comfortable four-nil win.
The ability in which they moved the ball around the field was breathtaking, constantly switching sides and attacking from new angles. Lahm proved to be a very effective captain as he kept his back-line rock solid, never really allowing Australia a chance on goal.
The scoring opened up in the eighth minute off of a Lukas Podolski bullet, after a crisp back pass from Muhller. From then on fans could tell this would be an easy game for the Germans. Then by the twenty-second minute, Klose would score, finally after having failed some clear goal-scoring chances, off of a header to put the game completely out of the socceroos hands. Final goals by Muhller in the sixty-seventh minute, and by Cacau in the seventieth minute would seal the deal.
All in all, the Germans were perfect all around; however, the same can not be said for Australia. The team started out well, but after the second goal it just seemed like they were not in the game. Germany was constantly able to make runs behind the back four and get chances as the Australians were just too slow to react with their back line. It seemed like they were trying to create an off-sides trap, but against seasoned players in a top flight, it just didn't work, instead they should probably try staggering themselves in the future. By doing so the Australians would have better vision of the attackers, allowing them to react a split-second faster on the break away runs.
Midfield was also a large issue, with the team not being able to string together passes. This was mostly a confidence and temperament issue. They were becoming frustrated too easily, and that frustration led to mistakes, bad touches, and the tendency to blame others for their own shortcomings. Since the team is now without Cahill, who is amazing at finding and creating space, the Australians will really need to practice feeding the ball to each other, as the replacement strikers will not be as experienced.
Excellent showing by the Germans, easily the best team in the tournament so far. I only hope Australia is able to put this game behind them and bounce back.