Women’s World Cup
July 10, 2011 by staff
Women’s World Cup, Tournament favorites Germany crashed out of the Women’s World Cup 0-1 defeat to Japan. Silvia Neid admits that the team was devastated after their quarterfinal exit in overtime. Germany has emerged from a World Cup at the beginning of the first time since 1999, in a surprise defeat of Japan.
In 90 minutes of normal play, the hosts and tournament favorites Germany was held to a goalless draw in an awesome Japanese defense. As the game stretched into extra time, Germany was unable to exploit its opportunities. A break in the 108th minute saw substitute Karina Maruyama Japan in case of fire the winning goal, silencing the sellout in Wolfsburg.
After winning both the 2003 and 2007 World Cups, this is the first time that Germany has lost the FIFA tournament since losing 3-2 to the hosts U.S. in 1999.
“They [Japan] were very disciplined, very fast and keep your training well,” said Germany coach Silvia Neid.
A strong Japanese defense said that, despite numerous opportunities, Germany could not break. In particular, Kerstin Garefrekes and Simone Laudehr teamed well on the wing, but found the net.
The anguish of Germany started in just the fourth minute of play as midfielder Kim Kulig fell sharply after jumping from a header. A wounded and distressed visible Kulig was replaced and was forced to watch the rest of the game from the bench. Initial diagnosis indicates that she has broken the cruciate ligament in the knee.
Also benched was the former Germany star striker Birgit Prinz. The 33-year-old has had a bout of bad form, and was replaced on Saturday by the Inka Grings.
Grings had chances but could not convert, shooting high and high degree.
After 90 minutes of blockade, the Germans increased the pressure on Japan in overtime, but were still unable to break their defense. Maybe more, relying on its air dominance, many free kicks and corners Germans could not find the network.
As a penalty shoot-out seemed increasingly likely, Japan used their speed and agility to take a break at minute 108. His goal came on a quick counterattack, with Captain Hamor Sawa floating the ball through to score Karina Maruyama.
Germany played the remaining twelve minutes with the urgency and creativity, but goalkeeper Kaihuri Ayumi blocked shot after shot.
“I’m sad we’re out of the tournament, and I do not think it was the worst of the two teams,” Neid said after the game. “We did not score any goals and if no attention is paid throughout the game, you lose the game.”
Kulig added that losing playmaker so early “does not help us at all.”
A German team welcomed the watery sell-out 26,067 crowd in Wolfsburg, most of which will have to find a new team to support throughout the tournament. Japan will face Australia or Sweden in the semi-final in Frankfurt on Wednesday.
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