FIFA CONFEDERATIONS CUP
*Germany tops Group B, to meet Mexico in second S’final Thursday
African champion, Cameroon, failed to make the cut to the semi final of the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia as the Vincent Aboubakar led Indomitable Lions lost their last Group B game 3-1 to Germany at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi yesterday.
Germany finished top of the Group on seven points followed by Chile who played 1-1 with Australia. Chile is to play European champion Portugal in the first semi final on Wednesday while Germany takes on Mexico the next day.
Cameroon is left to play for classification before returning to Yaounde to begin their preparation for the trip to Uyo to play the Super Eagles in the double headed Russia 2018 World Cup qualifier in August.
After a goalless first half, highlighted by a superb save from Marc-Andre Ter Stegen, Die Mannschaft eventually found the breakthrough thanks to Kerem Demirbay, who scored his first goal for Germany with a thunderbolt finish 25 yards from goal after captain Julian Draxler played him through with a neat flick.
The Cameroonians were reduced to ten men in the 64th minute when, after a Video Assistant Referee review, Ernest Mabouka was sent off for a late challenge on Emre Can.
Werner then gave Germany a two-goal cushion with a diving header, his first goal at senior international level, from Joshua Kimmich’s cross on the right wing.
Vincent Aboubakar found the net with a glancing header with ten minutes remaining, but Werner restored Germany’s two-goal lead, ensuring their first-place position in the group and becoming the first German to score two goals in a single Confederations Cup match with his close-range, accurate finish.
The victory means that Joachim Low’s side will stay in Sochi for their semi-final against Mexico on June 29.
The Budweiser Man of the Match award went to RasenBallsport Leipzig forward Timo Werner. He was finally rewarded for his fine performances in the Bundesliga last season, where he was the top-scoring German in the league.
Werner scored his first goals for the senior national team and made history in the process by becoming the first player for Germany to score twice in a Confederations Cup match.
In the other game of the evening,
Chile reached the semi-finals after coming from behind to draw 1-1 against Australia in front of 33,639 fans in Moscow.
James Troisi had Robbie Kruse partly to thank for the opener. The No10 stole possession from the Chileans around the halfway line before persevering with the ball. His cross-shot found its way to Troisi, who lofted the ball delightfully over Claudio Bravo.
Trent Sainsbury then had a huge chance to increase the lead to 2-0, a margin of victory that would have seen Ange Postecoglou’s side through, but the central defender blazed over after being teed up by Tim Cahill.
After the break, Australia remained in the ascendancy, but were punished for not converting their chances. Substitute Martin Rodriguez finished from close range to level matters.