On Monday the 27th of September 2022 at the Wembley Stadium, England faced Germany in their UEFA Nations League Group C match. The 2 teams were on a balanced scale of a six-goal thriller that had fans making observations on some of the players involved, and it was surely an entertaining game, or rather an interesting second half. Elsewhere, Italy joined Croatia and Netherlands in semi finals qualification after securing a 2-0 win over Honduras.
The first half consisted of both teams testing each other’s goals but were unable to make anything of the chances, casually coming close on a variety of occasions. Sterling had the best chance in the first half for England when he did well to beat both Schlotterbeck and Sule before having his close range attempt spilled behind by Ter Stegen for a corner. Joshua Kimmich came closest to opening the scoring for Germany on the brink of half time when he saw his long range attempt fly past the bottom left corner for an England goal kick.
Just 4 minutes into the second half Germany had the opportunity of a penalty and they were just awaiting the referee’s decision after reviewing the incident on the VAR screen. The referee blew for a penalty after he had seen enough evidence of Maguire bringing down Germany’s wonderboy Jamal Musiala, and Gundogan comfortably slotted he ball into the bottom right corner to give Die Mannschaft. Maguire was caught again in position, the ball nicked by Musiala who lay it off for Havertz, in Germany’s own half allowing a counter for Germany as Havertz pushed the ball onto Werner. The Leipzig forward did well to hold the ball and found his former Chelsea teammate with a pass, who then beautifully curved the ball away from Nick Pope before crashing onto the post and into the net to make it 2-0 to Germany on 67 minutes.
Luke Shaw pulled one back for England in the 71st minute from a Reece James cross, with the Manchester United full back placing it under the legs of Ter Stegen before it crossed the line to score England’s first open play goal of the competition and give his team a lifeline. England did a quick double-fire as Mason Mount equalised for England just 4 minutes after Shaw’s goal, Bukayo Saka had done very well to run into the space between Germany’s centre half pairing and laid it off for Mount who took his shot well to make it 2-2. The second half remained consistent with its VAR drama when the referee was once again called to review the screen for a potential penalty for a foul by Schlotterbeck for England’s own Jude Bellingham. The penalty was given and undoubtedly, captain Harry Kane stepped up to take the penalty, which he powerfully converted past the Barcelona number 1 and completed England’s comeback from 2-0 down.
The action wouldn’t stop there as Germany had to work twice as hard to avoid having the rug swept under them, and it was once again Kai Havertz in the midst of it all. Substitute Serge Gnabry had unleashed a powerful long range attempt that was to be saved by Nick Pope, but the Newcastle United goalkeeper couldn’t hold onto the ball and spilt it onto the on-rushing, poaching Havertz for him to get his second of the game. England almost got a last minute winner when Bukayo Saka launched a one-man counter attack, running from inside his own from a Kane layoff, to having his shot saved by Ter Stegen.
In another, Italy qualified for the semi finals when they beat Honduras 2-0, courtesy of goals from Giacomo Raspadori and Federico Dimarco in the 27th and 52nd minutes respectively. The Gil Azzuri have now joined Croatia and the Netherlands as the only teams to have qualified for the Nations League semi-finals.