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Slovakia 1- Germany 4 (Euro Qualifier)

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Slovakia 1- Germany 4 (Euro Qualifier)

Postby FCBayernNews » Thu Oct 12, 2006 10:15 am


On Wednesday night the German national team took another big step towards qualifying for the European Championships in Austria and Switzerland in 2008. Joachim Löw’s men won their third qualifying match against Slovakia by an imposing 4-1 scoreline. And, with a maximum nine points they are second in the Group D table behind the Czech Republic, who have 10 points from four games.

Lukas Podolski (13th & 72nd min.), Michael Ballack (25th) and Bastian Schweinsteiger (36th) were responsible for German’s deserved and dominant win in front of a 10,000-strong crowd in the „Tehelné Pole“ stadium, the home of Slovan Bratislava. This latest victory boosts new national coach Löw’s already impressive record to five wins and 23 goals. For the Slovakians, who were stronger in the second half, Varga spared the home team’s blushes with his 58th-minute consolation strike.

<b>Assist for Lahm - Schweinsteiger scores</b>

In contrast to the 0-2 defeat 13 months ago the Germans seized the initiative right from the kick-off and set the pace and rhythm of the game, giving the hosts little opportunity to get into their stride. Following the run of play Podolski converted the first goal chance after a skilful lead-up from Miroslav Klose, giving Germany a 1-0 lead.

After the goal the men in red kept up the pressure and 12 minutes later extended their lead. A superb accurate pass from Lahm found unmarked ex-Bayern star Ballack who headed in from short range in the 25th minute. And 11 minutes later Schweinsteiger made it 3-0 as he capitalised on indecision from the Slovakian keeper Contofalsky.

<b>Seven qualifying goals for Podolski</b>

In the second half the Slovakians started brightly and managed to peg the scoreline back to 1-3 with Varga’s 58th-minute header. However, not long afterwards Podolski restored the three-goal difference with his seventh goal of the qualifying campaign, after more exemplary football from Klose. Slovakia were unable to make up any more ground on the Germans and the match finished 1-4.

“Lots of people said it would be difficult to sustain our level after the World Cup. In the last four games we have proved that we can play good football. I think that we put in an excellent performance in the first half”, commented Podolski in a positive mood after the game.
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