Noviembre 24, 2020

Germany end Northern Ireland's home run and crisis talk

07 Octubre 2017, 05:34 | Azura Castelo

Michael O'Neill's men are on the brink of securing a place in the World Cup play-offs

Michael O'Neill's men are on the brink of securing a place in the World Cup play-offs

As Low departed Windsor he sent his good wishes to Michael O'Neill and his players for the play-offs, said he hoped they would succeed in securing a place in Russian Federation and then hopefully his Germany team would be drawn to face Northern Ireland in the group stages of the 2018 World Cup finals.

Northern Ireland could be assured of a play-off place before Sunday's game.

The 27-year-old's effort - his first in global football - put Germany on their way to Russian Federation - and now they can focus on retaining the World Cup.

But the fact all seven players one booking away from missing the trip to Norway avoided the referee's notebook was the biggest result of the night.

A yellow card for any of the six key players would rule them out of the first leg.

However it was the star man Kimmich to see off Northern Ireland, finishing extremely well from a tight angle after Jonny Evans' clearance. We looked at this group (at the start) and said to ourselves we wanted to dominate this group, make no compromises and possibly not drop any points.

"If you look at the starting line-up, their oldest players are 28, 29, it gives you an indication of what's coming in". Player Timo Werner is pulled out of the squad due to injury. Then they consider goals scored and fair play points... "That we got the goal so early and then followed it up with another provided the ground stone for the win", Kimmich said.

"We're on a tightrope in terms of the bookings". "Rudy's goal was simply spectacular; they don't come much better than that". It's not that easy to rotate my squad as it is for some other managers. We'll just try not to get any.

Germany coach Joachim Loew said: "I'm happy".

"We're still in the situation where we believe we need something to control our own destiny and that is the main focus for us... and hopefully the rankings will be kind to us if we are in one of the eight spots". We knew the Northern Irish would play very defensively and they know how to do that well.

O'Neill will be proud of his side's effort in the second half, but will just feel that they could have got on the scoreboard to really trouble the Germans.

"We're going to Russian Federation to win something", the midfielder said after scoring the opening goal. "I thought we were comfortable against them at home and there's no reason why we can't win there".

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