De Bruyne leads Belgians past Germany in entertaining game
The Belgian footballers recorded a handsome practice victory over Germany in Cologne. Four days after the 3-0 victory over Sweden in European Championship qualification, it became 3-2 at the RheinEnergieStadion for the team of Domenico Tedesco, the new German-Italian coach of the Belgians who was coaching his second game. It was the Belgians’ first win over Germany since 1954.
Belgium started the game furiously and seemed to have looked very closely at the earwashing that Orange suffered last week against France. Like our southern neighbors, Belgium quickly scored two goals.
First, Yannick Carrasco was nicely sent away by Kevin De Bruyne after which the Atlético attacker shot hard inside. A few minutes later, De Bruyne put Romelu Lukaku alone in front of goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen and the striker did not fail to score, 2-0.
Ten minutes later, when Dodi Lukebakio got the ball in his own sixteen after a German deflected corner, he set off running. When he headed alone towards ter Stegen, the France-Netherlands scenario seemed to be copied in its entirety. However, the dazzling Hertha BSC winger shot the ball just wide, keeping Germany in the game.
Germany will host the European Championship next year and therefore does not have to play any qualifying matches. Practicing is done, however. Last Saturday, for example, the Germans won 2-0 against Peru. Niclas Füllkrug was the big man then with two goals and he was also successful against the Belgians.
Germans come back
A penalty kick just before halftime helped the Germans get back on track. The ball went to the spot after Lukaku had unfortunate hands and Füllkrug fired an impeccable shot. After halftime, the same Füllkrug headed the ball kiezelhard but just over, Timo Werner seemed to sign for the equalizer.
His finishing was perfect, but his timing was not. Just before he was played the ball, he was offside and the 2-2 was disallowed. Germany then emphatically went in search of the equalizer, but standout De Bruyne brought the margin back to two goals.
He set up the attack himself and seconds later, on a pass from Leandro Trossard, rounded off the ball nicely for the 3-1. PSV’er Johan Bakayoko had by then already entered the lines and could fully share in the celebration.
Serge Gnabry hit the post after a fine move, but was able to celebrate moments later when he headed in a Kevin Schade cross. This gave the Germans a few more minutes to chase an equalizer, but it never came.