Four-goal second half ends in stalemate between Ghana and Germany

SullyMuntaryGhana1-ToniKroosGermany2014WorldCup (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

For the first 45 minutes of the match, neither Ghana nor Germany could break the deadlock. Just six minutes into the second half, the flood gates opened.

Starting with a goal scored by Mario Götze and ending with a record-breaking finish from Miroslav Klose, Germany and Ghana combined to score four times in a 20-minute span to break the game wide open. Both teams had more chances to score late in the half but Ghana held on to a 2-2 draw with Germany at the Estadio Castelao on Saturday in Fortaleza.

The result means that if the U.S. Men’s National Team defeat Portugal on Sunday, they would automatically qualify for a place in the knockout stages. For Germany and Ghana, it means that they won’t know their fate until the final day of group stage action.

The spectacular second half followed a somewhat sleepy first half, with both teams struggling to complete passes in their opposing box. Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer was called to action for a couple of long-range Ghanian efforts, while Germany failed to break down a resolute and disciplined Ghanian defensive unit.

Six minutes into the second half, Ghana’s defensive wall was finally breached. Thomas Müller, who had been quiet most of the game, floated to the right wing and curled in a dipping cross towards the penalty spot. Götze was the quickest to react to it and got his head on the cross, deflecting the shot off his left knee and in for a goal to put Germany in the lead.

The advantage didn’t last long, however, as Ghana hit back three minutes later. Ghanian right back Harrison Afful floated a cross to the far post. Andre Ayew, winning his 51st cap for the Black Stars, rose above substitute Germany defender Shkodran Mustafi and powered a header to tie the match at 1-1.

Incredibly, Ghana took control of the game’s momentum and capitalized on a sleepy German defense. Sully Muntari slipped a perfectly weighted pass through the German back four to Asamoah Gyan in the 63rd minute, and Gyan, one-on-one with Neuer, blasted a shot into the far corner to put the Black Stars in the lead.

Germany head coach Joachim Löw immediately went to his bench and made a double substitution, bringing on Bastian Schweinsteiger and Klose, and just seconds later, Klose announced his presence.

In the 71st minute, German midfielder Toni Kroos beautifully curled in an in-swinging corner kick to the top of the six yard box. Defender Benedikt Höwedes rose high and flicked a header to the far post. Klose, the wily poacher, arrived at the back post and re-directed the ball home to tie the match.

The goal made Klose the joint-top scorer in World Cup history with 15 goals, tying him with former Brazilian forward Ronaldo. Klose is also the third player in World Cup history to score at four different World Cups, joining Pele and former German forward Uwe Seeler.

Germany and Ghana each had late chances to find a winner. Mesut Özil combined well with Kroos and Schweinsteiger on a couple of occasions to open up space in the box but neither he nor his teammates could finish their opportunities. On the other side, Ghana broke on a 3-0n-2 breakaway but couldn’t keep their heads, being called back for an offside decision.

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36 Responses to Four-goal second half ends in stalemate between Ghana and Germany

  1. BeardedSoccer says:

    Not a great result for us. Keeps Ghana alive and give them an advantage in the goals scored category. If we tie tomorrow it better not be 0-0.

    • CSD says:

      Without the help of any other results we can tie the next two games or win either game and we advance. Is that really a big ask in the World Cup? If we can’t do either of those two things we don’t deserve to advance. This isn’t kids soccer everyone doesn’t get a medal.

      • Lorenzo says:

        Agree. While it will be tough and really stinks not not have Donovan or Altidore out there tomorrow, we have seen that are guys can play with the big boys. That’s what we came to do. This isn’t 1990 anymore.

      • BeardedSoccer says:

        Good to know that if we advance on 4 points we didn’t deserve it.

    • FattyMatty says:

      Actually, not a bad result at all for the US. If we were to tie Portugal by any score, then a tie in the final match against Germany would see both USA and Germany through the final round. When both teams realize this, the willingness to push forward and score goals would be seen as too risky. Don’t forget that Jogi and Klinsi are buddies!

    • GW says:

      Using SBI logic we beat Ghana while Germany tied Ghana so what are you afraid of?

  2. CSD says:

    Great game in the second half. Best game of the tournament for me.

    • didoson says:

      Agreed. Just amazing.

    • Ali Dia says:

      +1. Very dynamic. Also, remarkably fluid– very few cynical fouls or unnecessary stoppages. I didn’t want it to end, particuarly after sitting through that painful Argentina-Iran game.

  3. OH NO! says:

    If the US attack and don’t defend for the whole 90 minutes like the last game then we’ll win.

  4. Jamie Z. says:

    As an American with German heritage and connections to Ghana and a Ghanaian middle name, this group has been almost overwhelming. I’d love for all three teams to be able to advance, but I’d be happiest with Germany and the U.S. moving on despite a valiant effort by Ghana (and some Ronaldo tears for good measure). Tonight’s performance was fantastic and must have been a delight for neutrals. The pace was blistering. Good to see Klose get his goal; the guy is a class act.

    • FattyMatty says:

      @Jaime. I am American, my wife is German, my mother is Portuguese, and my favorite taxi driver is from Ghana. You think you have it bad?

    • slyboy says:

      I have you guys beat. Dad is from Portugal ( I hold dual citizenship) mom is second generation mexican american, GF is German. And as an American i always root USMNT, but things have gotten a bit tense with the family during this world cup.

    • GW says:

      Jamie,

      Klose is a class act but if he does not retire that backflip he is going to hurt himself.

      He can’t stick the landing anymore.

  5. bizzy says:

    Sorry Germany…..we forgot to mention how hard it was playing Ghana…lol

  6. Fast Eddie says:

    Well, we’ll well. Whatever do we have? Germany has 4 points and Ghana has 3 points in 2 games. We have 3 points and Portugal have 0 with 1 game played, they plAy their second tomorrow.

    No chance that Germany can take it easy in the third game and for sure, Portugal absolutely needs a good result tomorrow.

    Seriously, do you all actually believe we can make it out of group playing g the same football as we have been playing? Rhetorical question, of course you do. however, I don’t. And I don’t think Ramos and Herzog do either.

  7. Hejduk4President says:

    Changes nothing. USA needs to go after a win.

  8. Chris says:

    Kinda ironic. Even though we beat Ghana, it’s still possible that they can advance out of the group instead of us (and effectively knock us out once again).

    Really don’t know what to expect out of Portugal tomorrow. They could come out completely on their game and give us fits (they regroup after their loss to Germany, Ronaldo ends up being in good shape and tries to make his mark in this WC), or come out completely off of their game and end up being a fairly easy opponent (they’re put off by their loss to Germany, the injuries they have, Ronaldo’s knee not in good enough shape for him to play the way he wants, and they suffer from the heat and travel they have to go through).

    • The Other Jeff says:

      Or, we make a couple of adjustments in our midfield to better posses the ball, and we beat Portugal straight up.

  9. Umlaut says:

    Let’s hope they take after their Iberian Peninsula neighbors and go out after two.

  10. chuck says:

    If we lose to Portugal, next Thursday is gonna be a nailbiting fest