Hello and welcome to Sportstar’s LIVE coverage of Spain vs Germany Group E FIFA World Cup game at the Al Bayt Stadium.
Match report: Niclas Fullkrug rescues Germany in showdown with Spain
Chance! Germany attacks against the run of play, with Sane making a great run along the left flank and tries to cross late, only to see it go out for a corner, following a good clearance by Spain. Simon saves the corner on the follow-up and the referee ends the game with a full-time whisle.
Spain continues to threaten with runs along the wings, while Germany look to contain the attack with white shirts in numbers in its penalty box. A draw from here will be the first points for Flick’s side in Qatar in the FIFA World Cup 2022, keeping its hopes for a round of 16 place alive.
Chance! Nico gives a through ball for Morata in the final third and the forward carries the ball into the box. However, a delay in shooting sees Schlotterbeck track back and end that run of play right there.
Germany tracks back and outruns Nico Williams to pass it back to its goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and Spain decides to replace Alba with Balde.
Germany gets a free kick at the edge of the Spain penalty box. Kimmich takes it, which hits the wall and goes out of play for a corner kick. The corner has Sane giving the ball away easily as Spain attacks on the counter.
Time running out of Germany. Four years ago, Mexico and South Korea were the death knell of the Germans and this time, Japan has already beaten them once.
Whistles and boos from fans in the stadium as Germany builds from the back. Losing two games in a row is something that the four-time World Champion may not be accustomed with. And chance for Germany as Musiala who gets a cross from the right, but fails to keep it on target.
Spain attacks on the counter yet again with Olmo setting up Morata, who leaves it for Asensio, but the Real Madrid man’s poor finish sees the ball fly miles over the net from a chance that could have doubled the lead for Luis Enrique’s side.
Dani Olmo’s run is checked by Kimmich, as he resorts to his defending duties and he gets into the book after a rash challenge. In three minutes, two Germans have been booked now, with Leon Goretzka booked for a challenge on Asensio.
Lovely one-two from Gavi and Pedri sees the latter get the ball to start a run into the German half, but Kehrer tracks back on time to stop the development.
Another free kick opportunity for Germany! Kimmich and Raum step up for it and the latter takes it, which is too high for any German player to reach. He was aiming for Kehrer along the right flank, who misses it, too.
Chance on either end! Asensio carries the ball along the left flank, crosses for Ferran Torres, which is intercepted by Neuer and Germany goes in attack on the other end. Muller gets to the ball, but the linesman finally raises his flag for off-side.
Kimmich takes the free kick and Rudiger meets it with a cross. But Simon intercepts and then catches it after a return header from a Spanish defender.
Foul! Busquets pulls down Musiala as he tries to barge into the final third and gets a yellow card for the offence and chance for Germany to strike with a free-kick.
Spain gets a corner kick, which lands for Torres, but his final shot is blocked just on time by Jamal Musiala.
Chance! Spain attacks on the counter with Olmo delivering a clinical cross for Torres, who meets it on time, but shoots it over the net. However, the linesman has the flag raised.
Spain starts its triangular pass magic, beating Germany in its attempt to steal the ball and Germany has to suffice with a throw-in close to the Spanish box.
Spain continues to press high with Germany sequestered in its half and now it tries an attack with Neuer starting to build an attack from the back. Germany, however, is dispossessed of the ball in the midfield and Spain’s attempt to get the ball back ends with a free kick after a foul on Goretzka.
Spain attacks against the run of play, with Olmo passing to Torres, but Torres’ final shot is smothered out of danger by the German backline.
Chance! Germany goes for an attack, with five white shirts in the Spain half. Gnabry takes the final shot from outside the box, but it goes off-target as Flick’s side shows intentions scoring, close to the half-hour mark.
Spain catches Germany off-guard with combinational play between Gavi and Pedri, but the whole German team tracks back while Muller clears the ball away.
Germany looks to build an attack along the flanks, with a long throw-in from Raum, but the Spaniards have kept their feet well in check to clear the ball away. Just one shot on target in the game so far.
Germany has a white shirt clung to every red shirt, and Spain switches play again, with Pedri finding Torres along the right flank. He tries to pass to Gavi, who is overrun by the German defence.
Germany marks Pedri and Gavi strictly as Spain decided to go with the long ball approach. It switches the play, but Germany gets back possession. However, Musiala is stopped in his tracks as Spain recovers the ball.
Ferran Torres gets the ball along the right flank, from a long ball by Laporte, but his attempt to cut into the box is stifled by David Raum.
Spain had over 1000 passes in its previous match and it continues to play a passing game against Germans, who have failed to capitalise on any attacking opportunity so far.
Olmo tries to make a run along the left flank in the German half, but two white shirts, Gortezka and Kehrer surround him to limit an early attack.
Spain enjoying early possession as it did its previous game as well, forcing Germany to make forward runs so that Luis Enrique’ side tries to attack on the counter.
National Anthems done and dusted!
Can Germany make a turnaround or will Spain march along after a commanding win over Costa Rica? Trepidation on the faces of players, excitement on the faces of fans. The stage, the Al Bayt Stadium awaits the clash, the contest to decide, who among two World Champions will win tonight.
Any changes for the two teams?
Spain starts an unchanged eleven, after its 7-0 win over Costa Rica, while Germany makes two changes after its 1-2 loss to Japan. Thilo Kehrer and Leon Goretzka replacing Nico Schlotterbeck and Kai Havertz.
Goretzka will replace Muller in midfield, while the Bayern Munich forwardis expected to for Hansi Flick’s side. lead the attack
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What happened when the two sides last met in the FIFA World Cup?
The last meeting between Spain and Germany was in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, where Carles Puyol’s decisive header guisded the Spaniards to the final in South Africa. Watch the header below:
Spain vs Germany Head to Head
Spain and Germany have met 25 times before and the Germans have won nine times, while La Furia Roja has won eight times and the remaining eight matches have been draws.
When the World Cup draw came out in April, one of the highlights of the group stage was Sunday’s Spain vs. Germany match at Al Bayt Stadium.
Eight months later, the game between the two former world champions and pre-tournament favorites gained even more prominence thanks to Germany’s surprising loss to Japan in its opener in Qatar.
Another setback against Spain this weekend and Germany may be heading home early for the second straight World Cup. A loss — coupled with at least a draw by Japan against Costa Rica earlier Sunday — will mean elimination for the four-time champions.
Spain, meanwhile, will be looking to secure its spot in the next stage and reinforce its status as one of the top title contenders following an impressive 7-0 rout of Costa Rica in its opener.
The signs are not encouraging for Germany. Its most recent match against Spain was an embarrassing 6-0 defeat in the Nations League two years ago. Its last win against “La Roja” came in a friendly eight years ago.
Germany won its fourth World Cup title in 2014 in Brazil but didn’t make it out of the group stage in 2018 after losses to South Korea and México. It would be the first time it fails to advance past the group stage in back-to-back tournaments.
Spain won its lone World Cup in 2010 in South Africa and was eliminated in the round of 16 in 2018 in Russia. A win against Germany will allow Spain to reach the last 16 if Costa Rica doesn’t defeat Japan.
Expectations around Spain’s young squad were raised after its outstanding performance against Costa Rica, when the team reintroduced “tiki-taka” ball-possession style and 18-year-old Gavi became the youngest World Cup scorer since Pelé in 1958.
The seven goals it scored against Costa Rica matched Spain’s tournament total from Russia in 2018.
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“The result gives us a big boost,” Spain coach Luis Enrique said. “But now we have to play against a Germany team that needs the victory.”
Luis Enrique said he wasn’t concerned with his young players being overly confident, and promised to make changes to the starting lineup for Sunday’s match, without elaborating.
Winger Leroy Sané could return for Germany after missing the match against Japan because of a knee injury. He was back in training on Friday, when Germany coach Hansi Flick was able to work with his full 26-player squad.
It will be the fifth meeting between the powerhouses at World Cups, with Spain winning the most recent one 1-0 in the semifinals of the 2010 tournament.
Spain hasn’t lost to Germany in official competitions since the 1988 European Championship, with two draws and three wins since then.
The Germans have lost three of their last four World Cup matches dating to the tournament in Russia.
They made headlines even before kickoff against Japan by covering their mouths to protest FIFA’s clampdown on the “One Love” armbands. It was not clear if they would repeat the gesture before the Spain match.