Germany have booked their place in the final of the Confederations Cup, with Joachim Löw’s side having seen off Mexico 4-1 in Sochi on Thursday. It was a comprehensive victory for the reigning world champions, who will go head-to-head with Chile for the trophy in St. Petersburg on Sunday.
Mexico — who now face Portugal in the third-place playoff — could hardly have made a poorer start to the semifinal, conceding twice in the game’s first eight minutes. Leon Goretzka netted the first from the edge of the area, with his fine-placed finish squirming beyond Guillermo Ochoa.
It took less than two minutes for Goretzka to seal his brace; this time a simple through ball by Timo Werner split Mexico’s defence apart, leaving his teammate to stroke home from close range. El Tri looked completely rattled, with Germany threatening to score every time they ventured forward. They should’ve added a third inside 20 minutes, though Ochoa denied Werner from point-blank range.
It took until past the half-hour, but steadily Mexico began to gain a foothold on the game. After much probing, they eventually found an opening, with Giovani dos Santos laying on an assist for Javier Hernández. The striker should’ve buried the ball in the back of the net in the subsequent one-on-one, though he prodded harmlessly over the crossbar.
The result was that Germany maintained their two-goal lead to the break, and Mexico were left facing a difficult second-half task. Werner almost made it mission impossible within seven minutes of the restart, though he could only screw the ball wide from a tight angle, under pressure from Héctor Moreno.
Eventually Werner did have his goal, with Germany killing the game off once and for all just short of the hour mark. Some intricate attacking play culminated in Jonas Hector pulling the ball across the six-yard box, leaving Werner with the simple task of tapping into the empty net.
Mexico went close to netting a consolation goal with a quarter-hour left on the clock. A looping Hirving Lozano cross was met in the penalty area by the towering Raúl Jiménez, though he could only stand and watch his header bounce back off the crossbar.
It took until the penultimate minute of the 90 before Mexico did score — and it was a goal well worth waiting for. A wonderful long-range strike by Marco Fabian left Marc-André ter Stegen with absolutely no chance, finally giving El Tri supporters something to celebrate.
However, their joy was short-lived, with Germany capping their win with a fourth in stoppage time. Substitute Amin Younes capped a fine move by angling a low shot across goal and into the bottom corner, sealing a 4-1 victory for his side. The other finalists, Chile, have every reason to fear this young German team.
Germany: Marc-André ter Stegen; Matthias Ginter, Antonio Rüdiger, Joshua Kimmich; Jonas Hector, Sebastian Rudy, Leon Goretzka (Emre Can 67’), Benjamin Henrichs; Julian Draxler (Amin Younes 81’), Lars Stindl (Julian Brandt 78’); Timo Werner.
Goals: Goretzka (6’, 8’), Werner (59’), Younes (90+1’).
Mexico: Guillermo Ochoa; Oswaldo Alanís, Héctor Moreno, Néstor Araujo, Miguel Layún; Héctor Herrera, Jonathan dos Santos (Rafael Márquez 66’); Javier Aquino (Hirving Lozano 46’), Giovani dos Santos (Marco Fabián 62’), Raúl Jiménez; Javier Hernández.
Goals: Fabian (89’).