If there’s one thing you can count on in the World Cup, it’s Germany making a deep run. They proved it again on Friday with a 1-0 victory over France to advance to a record fourth straight semifinal.
Mats Hummels goal in the 12th minute was all the Germans needed. The 1-0 deficit was a deathblow for the French, who hadn’t trailed once this World Cup and are now 0-11 all-time in this tournament when playing from behind.
Germany dominated possession in the first half and were rewarded when Toni Kroos' free kick found Mats Hummels inside the French box:
Hummels would come up big defensively, as well. In the 76th minute with France pushing, Karim Benzema had a great chance inside the German box, but a diving Hummels prevented the shot from testing Manuel Neuer, who finished with five saves.
Benzema would have a final chance in extra time, but his shot from just outside the six-yard box was easily blocked by the right hand of Neuer.
For the French, it was an impressive tournament, one that did a lot to erase the forgettable time they had in South Africa four years ago. The loss to Germany was also an historic one for their manager, Didier Deschamps. It was the first time he’d ever lost at the World Cup (8-1-2) as a player or manager with France.
It’s been a pattern of consistency for Germany. They’ve reached this point in seven of the last eight World Cups, a streak that includes one championship, three runners-up finishes and two third-place finishes.
Their next test? Hosts Brazil or Colombia on Tuesday.
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