The history of the World Cups has always had Germany as that everlasting lover with whom it falls from time to time, sometimes almost unexpectedly. But that history of lust was broken yesterday for the second time in a row. In a repeat of what happened in Russia in 2018, Germany, the great four-time world champion, the team that in another time with its mere presence scored goals, left through the back door. One of the great news of the World Cup. Another historic setback for one of the chosen ones. Their victory against Costa Rica was of no use to them, condemned until the end by the defeat in their debut against Japan. The Teutons won this time. They could not fail if they wanted to stay alive in Qatar. But they did it with more suffering than expected and having to come back in the final stretch of the duel. The defeat of Spain against Japan concluded an adventure that began crookedly and condemned them to a new elimination in the group stage, the second in a row. [Check the World Cup rankings in Qatar].
The fiasco against Japan on the first day was the closest thing to a football heresy. And although they raised the level against Spain, offering their lowest percentage of possession in a World Cup since 1966, the blow in that first duel would be final due to Spain's bad night. Great champions such as Neuer and Müller say goodbye, leaders of a generation that ruled football in the World Cup that was held in Brazil.
From the beginning those of Flick tried to be the best version of the Mannschaft. An offensive team and capable of causing shocks in the rival goal in every blink of an eye. And before the tenth minute was up, Gnabry opened the scoring with a good header after a cross from Raum.
Before and after the goal, the harassment was total. Flick's men had more than a dozen occasions in the first half alone, in which, however, they did not close the duel.
The young Musiala put the magic back on. A cheeky genius who wanted to apply as one of the great revelations of the World Cup. But it won't be in this one. Supported by him and the mobility and talent of Gnabry and Sané, Müller had a couple of frank shots, but the Bayern man has lost the effectiveness of yesteryear. Between the precipitation typical of nervousness and the good work of Keylor Navas, the game came alive at half-time. Before that Neuer had to get a hand on Fuller's shot from inside the area.
Costa Rica's notice was a preview of what would come in the second half. He slowed down the pace of the match. Germany became tense, who saw how Japan came back in the other game. And in that period the Costa Rican team hit. First Tejada and then Vargas overcame the match with the invaluable help of Neuer, very soft in two consecutive outings.
Germany had been better and would show it in the final twenty minutes of harassment and demolition in which Havertz, Müller's substitute, showed that today he has more goals and presence than his teammate. Two of his goals and one from Füllkrug at the last minute gave victory to Flick's men, who despite this could not celebrate anything in Qatar.
2- Costa Rica: Navas; Fuller (Bennette, m.74), Duarte, Waston, Vargas, Oviedo (Contreras, m.93); Eagle (Rooms, m.46), Borges, Woven (Wilson, m.93); Campbell; Venegas (Matarrita, m.74)
4- Germany: Nauer; Kimmich, Sule (Ginter, m.93), Rudiger, Raum (Goetze, m.66); Goretzga (Klostermann, m.46), Gundogan; Gnabry, Black, Sane; Muller (Havertz, m.66)
Goals: 0-1, m.10: Gnabry; 1-1, m.58: Tejada; 2-1, m.70: Vargas; 2-2, m.73: Havertz; 2-3, m.85: Havertz; 2-4, m.89: Fullkrug
Referee: Stéphanie Frappar (FRA), cautioned the Costa Rican Duarte (77)
Incidents: Match of the third day of group E of the preliminary phase of the World Cup in Qatar played at the Al Bayt stadium in Al Khor before 67,054 spectators.