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Thursday, 22 June, 2000, 16:53 GMT 17:53 UK
Back to the drawing board
Matthaus
Matthaus: up against it throughout the tournament
It was widely reported before the tournament that Germany were nothing like the side they had been in the past.

So that was to prove, but nobody could have expected the reigning European champions to surrender their crown so easily.

However, they didn't go down without a fight - unfortunately it was amongst themselves.

The selection of Lothar Matthaus sparked most of it and for once the German camp was far from united.

The early stages of the opening match with Romania proved that the pre-tournament reports on the Germans were right.


Ribbeck
Ribbeck: couldn't deliver the goods for Germany

A goal down within the opening five minutes they were fortunate that Romania were not out of sight long before Mehmet Scholl brought them level.

But their good fortune was to desert them against England and a 3-0 defeat against a much-changed Portugal side highlighted the lack of spirit in the German squad.

It was all too much for coach Erich Ribbeck who subsequently handed in his resignation.

"I draw the conclusions from our catastrophic campaigns and I clear the way for a successor," explained the 63-year-old.

"I failed to turn Germany's best players into a competitive team. We were humiliated in the last game," he admitted.

"This defeat hurts, but what hurts more is that we went out with a such a performance."

Even following Ribbeck's departure Matthaus has blasted other members of the squad. The feuding looks set to continue.

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See also:

22 Jun 00 | Germany
Matthaus slams German players
20 Jun 00 | Germany
Germany coach rues painful defeat
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