Germany knock out surprising Austria to advance to semi-finals

Four wins in four games, eleven goals scored and none conceded, Germany continues its perfect course. Victorious in their three group matches, the Germans signed a fourth consecutive success in the quarter-finals against Austria (2-0), Thursday July 21 in Brentford (England), synonymous with qualification for the semi-finals of the Euro 2022. They will challenge the winner of Saturday’s meeting between France and the Netherlands.

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Extra time had only just started when Germany finally booked their ticket for the last four of the competition, rectifying the anomaly of 2017 (it had been eliminated in the quarter-finals). By blocking the clearance of Austrian goalkeeper Manuela Zinsberger, Alexandra Popp buried the last Austrian hopes (2-0, 90e) to repeat the feat of 2017 when they reached the semi-finals for their first participation. She protected her team from an equalizer, rewarding her sacrifice and sense of duty for 90 minutes while fulfilling her role as a providential goalscorer (four goals in four games).

In short, she managed the goal of the break that her teammate Klara Bühl had missed on her serve a few minutes earlier (83e). His left foot slipped away even though the cages were wide open. In view of her evening performance, the Munich player would have deserved her goal.

The German coach, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg, could then take a deep breath after a more balanced game than expected. Admittedly, Germany led quickly thanks to Lina Magull (25e). The Bayern Munich midfielder benefited from the work on the left side of Klara Bühl, in recovery and in the center, and from the selflessness of Alexandra Popp, erasing cleverly to open the scoring against the run of play.

Austria particularly offensive

Because Austria showed offensive qualities that did not suggest their only three goals scored in the first round. From the start of the match, Irene Furhmann’s players jumped at the Germans’ throats by pressing high and projecting themselves quickly, like Julia Hickelsberger-Füller on her right wing.

In the first quarter of an hour, Marina Georgieva (13e), substitute at kick-off for the usual captain, Viki Schnaderbeck, headed the ball to the post of Merle Frohms. This will not be the only scare of the German defense which still managed to keep its clean sheet for the fourth consecutive meeting.

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In the second half, the Austrians found the amounts twice in less than five minutes apart. First Barbara Dunst with a sudden strike more than 20 meters from goal (53e) then Sarah Puntigam at the entrance to the surface following a corner (57e).

Sometimes it takes a bit of luck to draw a nice course in an international competition. We will not reduce the German victory to that, since, on its side too, it multiplied the big chances. Giulia Gwinn (46)e) also found the post on a cross from Klara Bühl who herself hit the cross shot with a nice shot from the right (78e).

With two goals scored following an opposing error, German realism, like a tribute to Uwe Seeler, a former great German striker of the 1960s who died on Thursday, allows him to continue dreaming of a ninth continental title. For a Nationallf who hasn’t won anything since the 2016 Rio Olympics, an eternity, the way ultimately matters little.

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