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Ecuador 0-3 Germany
Tuesday, 20 June 2006




Goalscorers Lucas Podolski (left) and Miroslav Klose celebrate
Podolski (left) and Klose both got on the scoresheet for Germany
Hosts Germany made it three wins out of three in the World Cup as they beat Ecuador to finish top of Group A.

Miroslav Klose, now with four goals, became the tournament's leading scorer, first putting the Germans ahead early on by rifling home from close range.

He then coolly slotted in from Michael Ballack's brilliant chip before Lucas Podolski slid home to wrap it up.

Ecuador will play England in the last 16 on Sunday, while Germany face Group B runners-up Sweden on Saturday.

The Germans were clearly taking the threat of a possible meeting with England more seriously than Ecuador and, despite having already qualified, were at full strength.

Having started the World Cup as dark horses, Germany's qualification for the knockout stages has been remarkably easy.

606 VIEW
MC
Granted, they have not faced any sort of test yet, coming up against a poor Costa Rica, a woeful Poland and now Ecuador who rested half of their first-team regulars.

But they have beaten every team they have faced, and they never seriously looked in any danger of not getting all three points once again in Berlin.

They took an early lead when Ecuador hopelessly failed to clear their lines and Bastian Schweinsteiger cleverly pulled the ball back for Klose to arrow into the corner from eight yards.

In truth, Germany should have had it wrapped up well before the break.

Klose just failed to connect with a Philipp Lahm cross, Bernd Schneider lashed one off target and Ballack's audacious 50-yard lob flew just over the bar.

Podolski looked like he desperately needed a goal to boost his flagging confidence, but when the killer second came, it fell to his strike partner once more.

Miroslav Klose hammers home the opener for Germany against Ecuador
Klose thumps home number one

Ballack's sumptuous chip cut out two defenders and Klose - albeit clumsily - rounded Cristian Mora and slotted home to double the advantage.

If Podolski was worried, he need not have been. Just before the hour mark, he finally broke his World Cup duck.

Germany repelled an Ecuador attack and broke quickly on the counter, Schweinsteiger sending Schneider away down the right from where the midfielder crossed superbly for a sliding Podolski to guide the ball home.

They cantered home after that, coach Jurgen Klinsmann using his substitutions to give Klose, Torsten Frings and Schneider a rest ahead of their last 16 tie on Saturday.

Which, as they face Sweden, is almost certain to be their first real test of the 2006 World Cup.


Ecuador: Mora, De la Cruz, Espinoza, Ambrossi, Guagua, Valencia (Lara 63), Edwin Tenorio, Ayovi (Urrutia 68), Mendez, Borja (Benitez 45), Kaviedes.
Subs Not Used: Castillo, Delgado, Hurtado, Lanza, Perlaza, Reasco, Saritama, Carlos Tenorio, Villafuerte.

Booked: Valencia.

Germany: Lehmann, Friedrich, Mertesacker, Huth, Lahm, Schweinsteiger, Frings (Borowski 66), Ballack, Schneider (Asamoah 72), Klose (Neuville 66), Podolski.
Subs Not Used: Hanke, Hildebrand, Hitzlsperger, Jansen, Kahn, Kehl, Metzelder, Nowotny, Odonkor.

Booked: Borowski.

Goals: Klose 4, 44, Podolski 57.

Att: 72,000.

Ref: Valentin Ivanov (Russia).

Fifa man of the match: Michael Ballack

TRIVIA

Germany have now won their group in each of the last five World Cup editions (including 2006). The last time Germany failed to finish first in the group phase was in 1986 when they were runners-up to Denmark in Group E.

Germany have now scored in each of their first three matches at the 2006 World Cup. In 2002 they scored in every match except for the final against Brazil (2-0). Miroslav Klose's opening goal in the 4th minute was the second fastest World Cup goal ever by a German player. The German record is held by Rudiger Abramczik who scored in the third minute against the Netherlands in 1978.

Klose's opening goal was also the fourth fastest goal scored at the 2006 World Cup and the first goal conceded by Ecuador this tournament. Klose has now lifted his World Cup total to nine goals. Only Gerd Muller (14), Jurgen Klinsmann (11) and Helmut Rahn (10) have scored more World Cup goals for Germany.

Trivia stats source: Infostrada Sports



GROUP A: HOW THEY FINISHED

  PGDPTS
  Germany 3 6 9
  Ecuador 3 2 6
----------------------------------------
  Poland 3 -2 3
  Costa Rica 3 -6 0


MATCH STATS: AT A GLANCE

POSSESSION

46% 54%
Ecuador Germany

Ecuador

  • 12 C Mora
  • 04 U De la Cruz
  • 17 G Espinoza
  • 13 P Ambrossi
  • 02 J Guagua
  • 16 L Valencia yellow card (63 C Lara )
  • 20 E Tenorio
  • 15 M Ayovi (68 P Urrutia )
  • 08 E Mendez
  • 09 F Borja (45 C Benitez )
  • 10 I Kaviedes

Germany

  • 01 J Lehmann
  • 03 A Friedrich
  • 17 P Mertesacker
  • 04 R Huth
  • 16 P Lahm
  • 07 B Schweinsteiger
  • 08 T Frings (66 T Borowski yellow card )
  • 13 M Ballack
  • 19 B Schneider (72 G Asamoah )
  • 11 M Klose (66 O Neuville )
  • 20 L Podolski

Ref: Valentin Ivanov
Att: 72000


SEE ALSO
World Cup 2006 group scenarios
19 Jun 06 |  World Cup 2006
Germany match reaction
19 Jun 06 |  Germany
Ecuador match reaction
19 Jun 06 |  Ecuador
South American World Cup view
19 Jun 06 |  World Cup 2006
Klinsmann urges players to focus
19 Jun 06 |  Germany
Berlin - Olympiastadion
03 Dec 05 |  Venues


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