Goretzka’s heroics send Germany into Euro 2020 knockout stage

Munich, Germany, Jun 23 (EFE).- Leon Goretzka kept Germany alive in Euro 2020 with a late goal in their third and final Group F match here Wednesday night, a contest in which the three-time champions twice had to claw their way back from a deficit against Hungary before securing a 2-2 draw.

Hungary, who had played reigning World Cup champion France to a 1-1 draw in their second round-robin game on June 19 in Budapest, needed just 11 minutes to open the scoring on a rainy night at Allianz Arena thanks to a header by captain Adam Szalai.

The underdogs opened the match with five defenders and became even more conservative over the remainder of the first half after grabbing the lead, but Germany managed to equalize after the intermission when Hungarian goalie Peter Gulacsi failed to clear a free kick by Toni Kroos and allowed Kai Havertz to head the ball over the line in the 66th minute from point-blank range.

Hungary then appeared headed for a shocking upset and a berth in the knockout stage out of the Group of Death when they retook the lead two minutes later on a header by Andras Schafer past onrushing German keeper Manuel Neuer, but their dreams were shattered in minute 84 when second-half substitute Goretzka powered a shot from the edge of the area that went off Gulacsi’s outstretched leg and into the back of the net.

Although the Hungarians can leave the tournament with their heads held high, Germany advanced to a mouth-watering round-of-16 clash against England on June 29 and France and defending champion Portugal also moved through out of Group F and will next take on Switzerland and Belgium, respectively. EFE


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