Germany's finishing was terrible in the first half against Greece, but it found a goal from an unlikely source late in the period and leads the Euro 2012 quarterfinal, 1-0. Philipp Lahm, who had not scored for Die Mannschaft for two years, stepped up and delivered a wicked strike in the 39th minute to put Germany ahead near the end of a half full of struggles.
Greece came out to defend and camped 10 players behind the ball for the entirety of the half as expected, but the team didn't defend well at all. Only some terrible finishing by Germany saved the Greeks and kept the score level until late in the half. The Germans should have easily led by multiple goals well before Lahm scored their opener.
Andre Schürrle, one of Joachim Löw's three new starters up front, had a goal disallowed for offsides in the fourth minute that was just the first signal that the floodgates were open for the Germans. Marco Reus missed a clear chance in the 11th minute, and it wouldn't be his last bad shot.
In an incredible three minute period, which was Germany's most impressive spell and also the team's worst finishing spell, the Germans missed three clear chances in three minutes. Mesut Özil, Schurrle and Reus missed easy chances back-to-back-to-back between the 23rd and 25th minutes in inexplicable fashion.
Maybe Lahm sensed that his forwards needed a bit of help in the 39th minute, or maybe he just saw an opening. In any event, he took matters into his own hands by blowing by two defenders then hitting a great right-footed shot from 20 yards out that swerved sharply before whizzing past Michail Sifakis into the back of the net.
This match is probably over, but stay tuned to see if Greece decides to put a second man in front of the ball.
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