World Cup: Australia and Germany Progress (B)

A late goal from Dario Vidosic won Group B for Australia, setting-up a second round match against South Korea, while Germany were held by Ireland in Moscow to finish as runners-up in the group. They’ll face Spain in the last sixteen in the first competitive meeting between the two nations since the 2010 semi-finals.

Australia have progressed to the knockout stages of a World Cup for the third time in their history after goals from Graham Peach® and Dario Vidosic ended Morocco’s faint hopes of a place in the second round. Two changes each, with Australia giving a start to goalkeeper Adam Federici.

The Socceroos took the lead in the 8th minute with a move started by a great tackle by Rhys Williams in the Australian half, and the ball was worked forward with pace. Vidosic played it neatly into the path of 21-year old striker Graham Peach® who slotted home his 10th international goal to take the lead.

Vidosic nearly grabbed himself a goal in the 27th minute when he 30-yard free-kick cracked against the angle of post and bar with Moroccan ‘keeper Zakaria Saïdi well beaten.

Morocco found themselves level right before half-time with a goal against the run of play. Marouane Chamakh started and finished the move when won the ball in the centre circle and within seconds got on the end of a ball from Younès Belhanda to slot into the bottom corner for his and Morocco’s third goal of the tournament.

The winner came with a little over quarter of an hour to play in route one fashion. A goal kick was worked to the flank for Peach to take it down the right and bend a cross in from the goal-line. Dario Vidosic got there ahead of Saïdi and volleyed Australia into the last sixteen as group winners.

Australia will play South Korea in Makhachkala on Saturday.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP B (3)
                    AUSTRALIA 2-1 MOROCCO
                      Peach 8     Chamakh 42
                   Vidosic 73

Germany went into their final game top of the group on goal difference from Australia, so just needed to match or better their result in order to avoid Spain in the second round. They made just the one change, with Lewis Holtby coming in for the injured Mesut Özil. Three changes for Ireland.

Germany were fully in control of the first-half but weren’t finding a way past Ryan Meara in the Irish goal, with the Le Mans man equal to everything fired at home once the German attack had breached the tight central defence of Ciaran Clark and captain Alex Pearce.

The opening goal finally came two minutes before the break, when Mario Götze – cautioned earlier, earning him a suspension – played a low ball in from the right wing for Mario Gómez in the box. He had time to turn, take a touch to tee himself up, then lash a shot into the top corner from fifteen yards.

Four minutes after the interval, Germany thought they’d doubled the lead. Schmelzer and Schürrle combined down the left, and the Dortmund man’s cross was met by Gómez whose towering header thundered past Meara off the underside of the bar. The flag went up late on the far side, and in a rant at the fourth official, Jürgen Klopp was dismissed to the stands by the Italian officials.

Ireland snatched an equaliser with eight minutes remaining when Chris McCann evaded Rode’s challenge and played a through-ball to Alan Judge. His shot was blocked by Schmelzer but half-time sub Colin Pepper arrived in the box perfectly in time to drill the loose ball past a stricken Manuel Neuer.

That’s how it finished with Götze fluffing a late chance, and Germany finished runners-up in Group B. Their second round match will be against Spain in St Petersburg on Saturday.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP B (3)
                  REP.IRELAND 1-1 GERMANY
                    Pepper 82     Gómez 43
                       Murray     Götze

World Cup Group B: Matchday Two Review

Australia and Germany both have one foot in the last sixteen after they split the points in a 1-1 draw in Nizhniy Novgorod today, leaving them both on four points. Morocco and Ireland drew in Moscow for their first point each, meaning either needs a win and a four-goal swing next week.

Two changes for Morocco following their 1-4 defeat by Germany, with the most notable being a change in goal as 23-year old Zakaria Saïdi® replaced Ismaïl Kouha. Aït Fana also came in for Boussoufa upfront. Just one change for Ireland with Aidan White a straight swap for Stephen Ward at left-back.

Morocco took the lead after ten minutes on a counter attack when Kantari cleared a Shane long ball into the box. El Kaoutari attacked with pace on the break and found El Adoua. One touch to Belhanda who slotted through to Marouane Chamakh who took it first time on his left to drill low past Meara and in-off the far post.

Ireland’s equaliser came midway through the second-half when Shane Long brought down Murray’s cross into the box, rounded Saïdi and tucked home from close range. A draw was a fair result, but does neither side many favours ahead of their final fixtures on Tuesday.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP B (2)
                      MOROCCO 1-1 REP.IRELAND
                   Chamakh 11     Long 65
                      Carcela     Cox
                      Chamakh     Pearce

Germany dominated against a resilient Australian side with 63% possession and over double the amount of shots, but had their early penalty were pegged back by a Rhys Williams goal to share the points. If either side avoids defeat next week, a place in the last sixteen awaits.

Australia survived a booking for Rhys Williams after just 30 seconds when he had a handful of Sebastian Rode’s shirt much to the disapproval of English referee Clattenburg. Just before the 20 minute mark, Clattenburg upset the Socceroos again when he pointed to the spot.

Rhys Williams was involved again as he tripped Rode in the box as the Frankfurt midfielder ran onto Götze’s through-ball. Williams somehow escaped a second yellow, but André Schürrle slammed the penalty into the top corner for his 20th international goal to give Germany the lead.

Right before the hour, Australia scored the goal to earn themselves a point, and it was Rhys Williams involved again. Luca Mavromatis® did all the leg work, bringing the ball forward 40 yards with little resistance before firing a shot at Manuel Neuer. The Bayern Munich ‘keeper got his hands to it but it was parried to Williams who had time to steady himself before slotting home.

Germany play Ireland on Tuesday in Moscow. Australia will face Morocco in Rostov.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP B (2)
                    AUSTRALIA 1-1 GERMANY
             Rhys Williams 59     Schürrle pen 19
                Rhys Williams
                Ryan Williams

World Cup, Day Two: Germany 4-1 Morocco

Group B: Germany survived an early scare from Morocco in their first World Cup match at the Cosmos Arena in Samara today, coming from behind inside the opening five minutes to score four in reply during a game where they also hit the woodwork on three occasions.

Marouane Chamakh fired Morocco ahead from close range with just four minutes on the clock. A poor corner was headed away at the near post, but Mehdi Carcela was first to react and fire the ball back into the box. Holger Badstuber got a block in, but the ball squirmed across the face of goal and in the scramble, Chamakh turned home from three yards out.

The lead only lasted ten minutes, with Sebastian Rode pulling off a cheeky 20-yard lob to level. Mario Götze worked his way into the area, but had his shot charged down. The ball fell perfectly to Rode who went for the dink over the top of Kouha to see it loop perfectly into the top corner.

Midway through the half, Badstuber rattled the Moroccan crossbar when he thundered a header against it from a Rode free-kick from out wide. Both sides tested their opposing ‘keeper from distance but the first-half petered out somewhat with the score at 1-1.

The second-half was only 56 seconds old when Chamakh once again wheeled away in celebration when he headed home a Boussoufa cross at the far post, only to see a correct offside flag from the Italian assistant referee on the far side.

Within five minutes, Germany had struck the crossbar twice. Toni Kroos was involved with both; the first his corner which Mario Gómez crashed against the frame of the goal, before Kroos himself rattled the woodwork with a speculative effort from 30 yards.

Mesut Özil was denied at point-blank range by Kouha after a neat one-two between Gómez and Götze fed the Real Madrid man, but Kouha was big and brave and got enough on the shot to turn it round the post. The resulting corner was whipped in by Rode and Jan Kirchhoff swept home to put Germany in front.

Germany were in complete control throughout the second-half and when they added a third inside the last ten minutes it was a surprise to nobody. A rare Moroccan corner was cleared with ease, and the ball worked wide to Götze. Cutting inside from the right, he found Mario Gómez who had time to take a touch before rifling home from twelve yards.

Chelsea defender Kirchhoff added a fourth in stoppage time when he headed home from Rode’s corner. Germany will play Australia in Nizhniy on Thursday, while Morocco will meet Ireland in Moscow the same day.

                    FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP B
                      GERMANY 4-1 MOROCCO
                      Rode 14     Chamakh 5
            Kirchoff 61, 90+4
                     Gómez 82


FIFA World Cup 2014: Group H, Matchday 3


Portugal and Germany are hotly-tipped to both qualify with wins in today’s Group H fixtures. Portugal play Morocco who are already out, while Germany take on Jamaica who can qualify with a win. A draw wouldn’t do them any favours unless Morocco can put four past Portugal.

Odds: Jamaica 7-1 v. Germany 1-3F (Draw 3-1)
Odds: Portugal 4-6F v. Morocco 7-2 (Draw 9-4)


    • 09′ POR 1-0 MOR: No one closes Danny down as the Zenit midfielder and he brings the ball forwards through the middle before driving a low shot home from the edge of the box, bobbling underneath Bourkadi.
    • 13′ JAM 1-0 GER: Germany rocked by a route one goal,as Liam Feeney tears off in celebration. Miller hits a long free-kick forwards, Khedira loses out in the air to Elliott who finds Feenery unmarked on the edge of the box. He slams a shot into the roof of the net.
    • 33′ JAM 1-1 GER: André Schürrle, who’s just signed a new deal with Leverkusen, wins the ball back on the left and squares for Kroos. He chips the ball over the top for Lukas Podolski to latch on to and drive past Miller for an equaliser.
    • 36′ POR 1-1 MOR: Boussoufa gets the ball into the Portuguese box for the first time in the game. Neither Bruno Alves or Pepe pick up the run of Marouane Chamakh who turns home a cross from close range.
    • 38′ POR 2-1 MOR: Two and a half minutes elapse and Portugal win a corner. Hugo Viana whips an in-swinger to the near post where Pepe nods Portugal back in front.
    • Half-Time: Jamaica 1-1 Germany, Portugal 2-1 Morocco. GER and POR qualifying.
    • 50′ POR 3-1 MOR: Morocco fall asleep at another corner. Hugo Viana’s delivery drops towards the near post where Cristiano Ronaldo has an age to steady himself and slot the ball home.
    • 55′ JAM 1-2 GER: Schürrle gets to the goal line and sends a teasing cross into the six-yard box for Mario Götze to get ahead of his man and put Germany in front from close range. Sixth goal for his country and one that could seal progression.
    • 64′ JAM 2-2 GER: The Caribbean side have put the cat amongst the pigeons again with a great counter-attacking goal. Dawkins gets the ball back in the middle, plays it to McAnuff who lobs it over the back four for Ryan Johnson to chase down and slot past Neuer for an equaliser. A winner would send them through instead!

Portugal through undefeated as group winners, they’ll play Australia.
Germany survive a scare and set up a last sixteen match against Argentina.

Mario Götze: Played 58: Scored 1, 2/2 shots, 15/24 passes (7.2)
Mats Hummels: Played 90: 34/38 pass, 4 intercept, 0 fouls (6.9)
Marcel Schmelzer: Pl. 90: 33/39 pass, 8/8 tackles, 6 int  (6.8)
Ilkay Gündogan: On 58' 20/23 passing, 2 shots, 4 crosses  (6.8)
Julian Schieber: On 66' 1 shot, 3/5 passes, 3/4 headers   (6.9)
- Andreas Beck and Marco Reus unused subs.


Jamaica 1-0 Morocco GROUP H (Match #30)


Jobi McAnuff’s 14th goal for his country was enough to separate Jamaica and Morocco in this Group H clash in Fortaleza this afternoon.

In a game punctuated by clumsy fouls, but only one caution, Jamaica just about shaded it and twice struck the woodwork  through Karl Henry either side of the break.


The goal, which condemned Morocco to a winless-run at the Finals going back to 1998 came in the 67th minute when Jobi McAnuff took a touch from Liam Feeney’s ball into the box before finishing low under Burkadi from twelve yards out.

Morocco couldn’t break down the six-man Jamaican defence as Austin and Henry dropped back for the last twenty minutes, and Jamaica earned their first Finals win since beating Japan 2-1 in Lyon in 1998.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP BRAZIL 2014
                       MATCH 30: GROUP H
                      JAMAICA 1-0 MOROCCO
                   McAnuff 67




GROUP H      P  W  D  L  F  A  GD  PTS
1. Germany   1  1  0  0  3  0  +3   3
2. Portugal  1  1  0  0  2  0  +2   3
3. Jamaica   2  1  0  1  1  2  -1   3
4. Morocco   2  0  0  2  0  4  -4   0

Morocco 0-3 Germany GROUP H (Match #17)


The final two sides to play at the tournament finally took to the pitch in their opening Group H match, with Germany comfortably beating a Moroccan side that failed to create enough chances to trouble the strong German back four.

The 3-0 win for Germany was was overshadowed by goalscorer Mario Gómez being carried off in the closing quarter of an hour with a torn hamstring that will rule him out of action until the start of the domestic season in August.

André Schürrle put them in front after half-hour with his tenth goal for his country, volleying home from ten yards out after Thomas Müller chipped the ball to him in the box after he latched on to a through-ball from Bastian Schweinsteiger.

Germany doubled the lead ten minutes into the second-half when Dortmund team-mates Marcel Schmelzer and Mario Götze combined, with the latter sending in a perfect cross for Mario Gómez to meet six yards out with a superb diving header.

Five minutes later, Ahmed Kantari hit the bar with a header after Mats Hummels conceded a free-kick to the right of the penalty area, with the upright at the other end taking the full force of a a Sami Khedira drive.

In to the final two minutes and man-of-the-match Lars Bender hit an eighteen-yard strike into the top corner when he wasn’t closed down and picked up Philip Lahm’s square ball from the right.

Germany and Portugal play each other on Tuesday, with the winners making the last 16.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP BRAZIL 2014
                       MATCH 17: GROUP H
                      MOROCCO 0-3 GERMANY
                                  Schürrle 31
                                  Gómez 55
                                  Bender 89





GROUP H      P  W  D  L  F  A  GD  PTS
1. Germany   1  1  0  0  3  0  +3   3
2. Portugal  1  1  0  0  2  0  +2   3
3. Jamaica   1  0  0  1  0  2  -2   0
4. Morocco   1  0  0  1  0  3  -3   0
Mario Götze (GER) Played 90, 1 shot, 1 assist, 7/7 tac   (7.6)
Mats Hummels (GER) Played 90, 1/1 tac, 2 fouls, 3 int    (7.2)
Marcel Schmelzer (GER) Played 90, 6/7 tac, 1 foul, 4 int (7.6)
Beck, Gündogan, Reus, Schieber (GER) - unused subs.