BHUBANESWAR, DEC 6 : A last-minute goal by Florian Fuchs enabled Germany prevail over hosts India by 1-0 in the Hero Men’s Champions Trophy at the Kalinga Stadium here today.
It was a tough competition with both teams kept creating opportunities but were unable to score, till the last minute when Germany finally broke through the huge defence of PR Sreejesh and scored for the team.
The first half ended scoreless with both side enjoying big moments. Akashdeep Singh’s deflection whilst swivelling whistled just wide of the post while, at the far end, Germany had a penalty stroke decision turned down on video review after Moritz Furste’s drag-flick wreaked havoc.
Germany, featuring seven of last December’s Junior World Cup winning side, took the initiative in the second quarter, drawing two good glove stops from PR Sreejesh. For India, Lalit Upadhyay tipped a right wing cross just past the post, leaving the scoreboard blank.
The second half followed a similar pattern, both sides forging openings but found goals hard to come by. Ramandeep Singh’s steal on halfway opened the door for Sardar Singh from a quick free but Nicolas Jacobi was out like a light to greet him at the circle’s edge and save.
To counteract that, Pilt Arnold drew another good stop from Sreejesh while Florian Fuchs hit the outside netting to see the stalemate continue into the closing quarter. Quarter four saw plenty of excitement in the stands before Fuchs last-ditch effort got Germany off to a winning start.
Speaking post the game, German captain Tobias Hauke”it was the biggest game ever played by the youngsters. We defended very well, we were slightly above India and they gave us a high voltage fight. It was our day today, we managed to score in the last minute”
Speaking on the team performance, PR Sreejesh, player of the match “Germany was a very tough match. They played very well and scored in the last moment but I appreciate my team mates who put in a full performance while our forwards made some good attacks which we couldn’t turn into a goal. In future matches, we will rectify that.”