Germans secure Euro 2016 spot

Germans secure Euro 2016 spot


Three-times European champions Germany needed a 79th minute goal from substitute Max Kruse to edge past Georgia 2-1 on Sunday and book their spot at the Euro 2016 finals after another wasteful performance in their final Group D qualifier.Germany squandered more than a dozen clear scoring chances in the first half alone against their weaker opponents before a 50th minute penalty from Thomas Mueller finally put them ahead. Georgia, already out of the running, levelled three minutes later with captain Jaba Kankava’s superb 20-metre volley.Kruse came to the rescue three minutes after coming on by slotting home from a Mesut Ozil pass to make sure the world champions, who had to put celebrations on hold after Thursday’s shock 1-0 loss in Ireland, finished top on 22 points.

The hosts, eager to bounce back from that defeat and finish their campaign on a high, made their intentions clear from the start with Mueller’s powerful drive forcing Nukri Revishvili into a good save in the third minute.The keeper topped that with a superb one-handed save to deny Marco Reus, who squandered another golden chance when he fired over from three metres out with the hosts piling on the pressure and the game mostly in the Georgian half.But the visitors would have taken the lead were it not for Germany stopper Manuel Neuer’s reflex save to Tornike Okriashvili’s shot in the 28th.The Germans, without injured Bastian Schweinsteiger and Mario Goetze, went ahead through Mueller’s 50th minute penalty, his ninth goal in the qualifiers, but the joy was short-lived due to 29-year-old Kankava’s spectacular equaliser.Buoyed by the goal, Georgia became more daring and twice more tested Neuer as the home fans grew impatient with the whistles and jeers becoming louder.
However, the Germans regained control and substitute Kruse, who had come on for Andre Schuerrle, settled their nerves with a fine low drive in the 79th.


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