BBC Sport world-cup-2010


Germany 0-1 Serbia

By Sam Lyon & Chris Bevan
  1. 09:00 Commentary  

    On this day 24 years ago, England faced Paraguay in the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, running out 3-0 winners thanks to a brace from Gary Lineker and Peter Beardsley. That would do against Algeria in Cape Town tonight wouldn't it?

  2. 09:07 Commentary  

    Yep, later on this evening England target their first 2010 World Cup victory against an Algerian side ranked by most as outsiders in South Africa. Anything less than a convincing three points and you can bet the critics - not least German legend Franz Beckenbauer - will be on their backs faster than a turtle shell. Last Saturday's 1-1 draw against the USA was not good enough, apparently, so the time has come for Don Fabio's boys to step up. Nervous?

  3. 09:11 Commentary  

    I'm Sam Lyon and I'll be setting the scene for our very own Chris Bevan in Cape Town ahead of our first game of matchday eight - Germany v Serbia. There are more issues than the back catalogue of the Beano to discuss, so why don't you think about getting involved? You can text me on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide), Tweet me on Twitter @sampatricklyon or kick the chat off on 606 - so you've no excuses.

  4. Twitter  

    From rm4rml: "The World Cup has finally sprung into action. Some wonderful, attacking football being played."

  5. 09:19 Commentary  

    Of course, it would be a lot easier to laugh off Franz Beckenbauer's stinging salvo if Germany hadn't have been so darn impressive in their opening game. But they were good. Very good. Australia may have played more than half an hour a man down, but even before that Germany were destroying them. Today, they face a step up in class against a Serbia side smarting from defeat to Ghana - and we might just get a clearer idea of how good they really are. Franz - we will be watching closely.

  6. Twitter  

    Sports news correspondent James Pearce: "Cape Town on match day has such a different feel to Rustenburg last Saturday. So many England fans here it almost feels like Germany 2006."

  7. 09:27 Commentary  

    Your meat in the sandwich of Germany-Serbia and England-Algeria today, of course, is Slovenia against the United States - the 'other' game in England's Group C. A win for Slovenia in that one could have serious ramifications for England - a draw would then be good enough against Fabio Capello's side next Wedensday for Slovenia to top the group. Lining England up for a possible second round clash against the in-form Germans. Ouch.

  8. SMS  

    From PoolieBoy: "We have seen a relatively young Mexican side beat France, now let's hope a young Serbia can come of age!"

  9. SMS  

    From Gav, Edinburgh: "Good to see France stay true to form - they've only made it to the knockout stage once in World Cups outside of Europe!"

  10. 09:35 Commentary  

    How nice of PoolieBoy and Gav to bring me on to my next topic of conversation - just how bad France have been in South Africa. Rubbish against Uruguay in the dullest of dull matches last Friday, they were even worse against Mexico last night. Credit to Javier Aguirre's side, they were cracking, but Ramond Domenech can only be branded a failure if France go out, surely? A draw between Uruguay and Mexico in their last group game would be enough to eng the French's short World Cup now. And you thought England's draw with the US was worrying.

  11. Twitter  

    From siddharth248: "Here's a stat for you... Germany, Argentina, Brazil and Italy - one of these four has always contested a World Cup final."

  12. 09:42 Commentary  

    While we're on the subject of France-Mexico - how good was Javier Hernandez last night? Sir Alex Ferguson reckons he's landed a peach of a player in signing him for Manchester United and on last night's evidence it's hard to disagree with him. Something of the Ole Gunnar Solskjaers about him if you ask me.

  13. 09:46 Commentary BREAKING (ISH) NEWS  

    David James will get the nod ahead of Robert Green in goal for England tonight, say our sources. Thoughts?

  14. Twitter  

    From mdlconnellan: "David James gets the nod for England - Fabio's righted the first wrong then, it seems."

  15. SMS  

    From Lee, Sheffield: "The last time France scored a World Cup goal outside Europe was in a third-place play-off on 28th June 1986 - the day I was born."

  16. 606  

    From Rooney: "Mmmm... so much football."

  17. 09:54 Commentary  

    "But Sam, what has Robert Green done to deserve being dropped?" Well person I've just made up who has been hiding under a rock for a week, it was his costly error against the United States last Saturday that cost England an otherwise (just about) deserved win. Cue speculation all week that the West Ham keeper will be axed with David James preferred from here on in. If it's true - and Fabio Capello insists he does not name his team until two hours before kick-off, remember - I can't say I'm surprised. Though I would've like to have seen Joe Hart trusted from the outset in South Africa. Perhaps that's why I'm not England manager, though. That - and no other reason. Clearly.

  18. SMS  

    From Mark, Ayr: "Talking of France, it's the Irish i feel for. It must hurt even more seeing how bad France have been and watching all their in-fighting. The Irish would have treated the World Cup like a once-in-lifetime opportunity, not like a scrap in a school playground."

  19. Twitter  

    From andyj247: "World Cup has no room for sentiment - as proved by Capello by picking James over Green."

  20. 10:03 Commentary  

    By the way - anyone who argues against Joe Hart's selection in goal for England because of his lack of experience need look only as far as Germany for your argument to start losing water. Before their opener against Australia, none of Germany's three keepers in South Africa had ever played in a competitive international. Eat that.

  21. Twitter  

    From strayjohno: "RE: Mark (09:54) actually, I feel great schadenfreude from seeing France implode so impressively."

  22. SMS  

    From Sigrun in Surrey: "As a German who's been living in England for 7 years and who drew England in the work sweepstake I want both teams to come 1st so cheering on both teams today."
    Ah - the allegiance-testing affect of the office sweepstake. Nice.

  23. 10:11 Commentary  

    For anyone who's interested - I drew Paraguay in our office sweepstake. I'm counting my winnings already.

  24. 10:17 Commentary  

    Now then, aside from France's capitulation, yesterday was memorable for two things - Argentina's hell-for-leather approach that bore fruit with a trouncing of South Korea, and the fact that Greece-Nigeria WASN'T an absolute snorefest. Miracles do happen. Jonathan Stevenson was in Johannesburg to watch Diego Maradona's side turn on the style - his conclusion? Argentina are the new Brazil. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it This-World-Cup-is-Boring merchants.

  25. SMS  

    From Anon: "Re 10:03, yes Germany have won a game but we will see if a lack of experience comes back to haunt them. I have a feeling it will."

  26. SMS  

    From Jack, Kingston Uni: "For the first time ever I thought I was in with a chance with my sweepstake team - Spain. Brilliant."

  27. SMS  

    From Naveed, Hartlepool: "I've got Switzerland in the sweepstake, after their surprise win over Spain I'm now a confident man, bring on Chile!!"

  28. 10:29 Commentary  

    Guess who's waded into the England keeper debate? It's only wobbly-legged former Liverpool man Bruce Grobbelaar. He says Fabio Capello should plump for David James tonight because "there can be no excuses for the mistake Green made". As a few of you have pointed out, the good thing is that David James has NEVER made a mistake as a keeper. Ever.

  29. Contributor BBC Sport's chief football writer Phil McNulty  

    "England coach Fabio Capello will wake up to almost perfect footballing weather conditions on his 64th birthday here in Cape Town - but only a World Cup win against Algeria will give him cause for real celebration. Capello was in feisty mood facing the media last night - criticism of his selection methods were met with an offer to replace him in his job. No takers. England's choice of goalkeeper is the big selection question again - and Rob Green fumbled a couple of relatively easy efforts from goalkeeping coach Ray Clemence in training last night. Let's hope, if picked, he has got it out of his system."

  30. Twitter  

    From BBC Sport's Dan Walker: "Is James the right custodian? Has Capello chosen with wisdom?"

  31. SMS  

    From hatty: "If Kevin Prince Boateng plays for Ghana and his brother Jerome plays for Germany when the two sides meet next Wednesday. Will it be the first time ever that two brothers have played against each other in the World Cup?"
    Yes. Or no. I'll, erm, check.

  32. 10:41 Commentary  

    So, whomever you support - or more to the point, whomever you've picked out of the hat in your office sweepstake - the time has come to sort out your matchday ritual and superstitions. May I suggest hopping to the toilet, wearing your jeans on backwards, and shouting "PIGEON" at the top of your voice at 13 minutes past every hour. Or, you could just do as the footballers do. Your choice my friends.

  33. 606  

    From Tim: "I got Algeria in the sweepstake..."

  34. 10:50 Commentary  

    Right, with just over 90 minutes to go until kick-off, how about we turn this chat right back around to the Germany-Serbia game? My friend and yours Chris Bevan will get your juices flowing with all the team news and match action in a bit, but let me hit you with some knowledge - Germany have played Serbia on 27 previous occasions (winning 16, drawing four and losing seven) and this, their seventh World Cup meeting, will equal the record number of meetings between two sides, held by Brazil-Sweden. I say this stuff to girls, you know.

  35. SMS  

    From Tom, Cardiff: "I'm stuck in school whilst Germany are playing and they are my sweepstake pick! I might sneak the headphones in and try to watch it on the mobile."
    Good lad, you know it makes sense.

  36. SMS  

    From Fraser, Glasgow: "Absolutely anything can happen in the Germany v Serbia game. Will we see more German goals or will we see the necessary fight needed by Serbia to keep them in the World Cup?! Hopefully both in a 5-4 classic!"

  37. 10:57 Commentary  

    If you're wondering, by the way, what it South Africa - and each and every stadium in use at this World Cup - might look like through a lens, you will probably want to check out our Map and Venue guide, which is kind of like a map with a guide to the venues on it surprisingly. It's very nice.

  38. 606  

    From battyslittlelegs: "Do people think that Ballack will be able to get back into the Germany team once he's recovered from injury, or is he a done force now?"

  39. 11:05 Commentary  

    Right, the time has come for me to hand you over to Chris Bevan, who will count you down to Germany-Serbia kick-off and bring you all the action from the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. I'll be reporting on that game, and I reckon it might just be a classic. Send your complaints to Twitter @ sampatricklyon when it doesn't happen won't you? See ya!

  40. 11:18 Commentary  

    Thanks Sam. Yep, I'm Chris Bevan and I'm in Cape Town - which has been invaded by hordes of England fans in the last 24 hours. There's a cracking atmosphere here at the moment and everyone is looking forward to tonight's game - including me, and you too I hope...

  41. 11:28 Commentary  

    There wasn't much sympathy for the fate of the French in my part of town last night, but let's take our hats (sombreros surely?) off to Mexico - who are very easy on the eye. So were Germany in their opening game, so fingers crossed for more of the same against Serbia today - kick-off in Port Elizabeth is just an hour or so away.

  42. Commentary Germany v Serbia line-ups  

    Germany: 1-Manuel Neuer; 3-Arne Friedrich, 17-Per Mertesacker, 16-Philipp Lahm, 14-Holger Badstuber; 6-Sami Khedira, 7-Bastian Schweinsteiger, 8-Mesut Ozil, 13-Thomas Mueller; 10-Lukas Podolski, 11-Miroslav Klose
    Serbia: 1-Vladimir Stojkovic; 3-Aleksandar Kolarov, 6-Branislav Ivanovic, 5-Nemanja Vidic, 20-Neven Subotic, 17-Milos Krasic, 10-Dejan Stankovic, 22-Zdravko Kuzmanovic, 14-Milan Jovanovic, 18-Milos Ninkovic, 15-Nikola Zigic.
    Referee: Alberto Undiano (Spain)

  43. 11:35 Commentary  

    There's been a lot of debate over who should start in goal for England against Algeria later and here's some news on that front. BBC Sport's news correspondent Dan Roan understands that David James will replace the much-maligned Robert Green.

  44. Contributor BBC Sport's Dan Roan  

    via Twitter: "Green exclusion tonight likely to signal end of his international career. Hart long-term successor to James now."

  45. 11:40 Commentary  

    The other big decision for England coach Fabio Capello ahead of the Algeria game is who to start up front alongside Wayne Rooney - Emile Heskey or Jermain Defoe. I spoke to Lee Dixon last night for his tactical view of how England will try to get the win that everyone is expecting.

  46. 11:45 Commentary  

    I meant to say this earlier, but give this page a manual refresh if you haven't already - that way you know who I am. I want to know who you are too, or at least what you think about today's games and how the tournament is shaping up overall. Text me on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide), I'm on Twitter @chrisbevan_bbc or you can always get involved on 606.

  47. 11:54 Commentary Germany v Serbia team news  

    Unsurprisingly, Germany coach Joachim Loew goes with the same line-up that routed Australia 4-0 last week against Serbia, resisting the temptation to rotate one or two of his first XI. Serbia coach Raddy Antic, though, does change things following his side's opening game-defeat to Ghana, opting for Neven Subotic in the absence of suspended central defender Aleksandar Lukovic and Milos Ninkovic as a surprise choice to start alongside striker Marko Pantelic. Zdravko Kuzmanovic for Nenad Milijas is the other change.

  48. SMS  

    From Norm: "Re 11:28. How rare, Chris, to have an Englishman hoping for some flowing German football. I almost detected some sincerity in your statement!"

    Strictly speaking, I'm actually Welsh... but parents/grandparents mean I'm eligible to play for England, Scotland and the Republic of Ireland (I'm still available if anyone needs me). I think we all should admire how Germany are playing though - hope they keep it up too.

  49. Commentary Germany coach Joachim Loew  

    "Since they lost their first match they are even more dangerous in the second game. They are like a boxer who takes a first blow, they are poised
    to hit back. Their coach (Radomir Antic) has talked about honour, character,
    that tomorrow's game is the match of the year. I know the Serbian culture, they are strong fighters and are perfectly able to deliver on their promises."

  50. 606  

    From the_fosse: "I’m going to call this early. World Cup shock, 1-0 Serbia."

    Quite early... but very brave.

  51. Commentary Serbia coach Raddy Antic  

    "We are facing the team that has shown the best football so far, in my opinion. I was impressed with their game against Australia. We know we have to rise to the occasion. That's the trademark of real champions. This upcoming match is really a historic match for us. But Germany should also inspire us to regain the passion and joy in our game. We were too tight against Ghana, we failed mentally. All our players have to raise their level."

  52. SMS  

    From Craig Levein: "Re Norm's text, can you play centre-half?"

    I'm more of a left-back Craig, but I'm versatile - I'm just as bad wherever I play.

  53. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Shearer  

    "Germany have started this tournament very well. You have to take in consideration that they have only played Australia but you can only beat who is in front of you and it was a great performance with a lot of goals. They were convincing and they made a real statement."

  54. SMS  

    From Ash in Leeds: "Can't see Serbia being able to stop Germany, they looked poor against Ghana, and Germany look such a strong unit."

  55. 12:25 Commentary  

    The players have just emerged from the tunnel at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth. Sadly, the ground is far from full - again.

  56. 12:29 Commentary  

    Luton Town (and Manchester City) fans will remember Serbia coach Raddy Antic from his time in English football in the early 1980s... he's also managed a couple of teams in Spain you may have heard of? A big day for him today, though: lose this and Serbia's World Cup could be all but over. Kick-off is moments away...

  57. 12:30 KICK-OFF Germany v Serbia  

    Here we go. Germany get us under way on a sunny day in Port Elizabeth.

  58. 3 mins Commentary  

    This is promising. Serbia have not exactly been shy in the first couple of minutes. Milan Jovanovic has had a header (comfortably) saved and Dejan Stankovic dragged a long-range shot wide.

  59. SMS  

    From Nick from Liverpool: "Miroslav Klose to score another couple today - he is criminally underrated in my opinion."

  60. 6 mins Commentary  

    Jurgen Klinsmann told me this week how Germany like to get the ball forward as early as possible - he said they play in a 'Premier League' style. They've just had their first decent spell of possession but Philipp Lahm's final ball was too strong for Mesut Ozil. Looking forward to seeing more of him today too.

  61. 8 mins Commentary  

    Germany's first real sight of goal. Nemanja Vidic clears a cross, but only as far as Lukas Podolski. He has time and space on the edge of the area but slices his shot and misses the target.

  62. 12 mins Commentary  

    Serbia are more patient - or pedestrian - coming forward. Still, they are doing alright so far. Milos Krasic crosses for Milos Ninkovic who arrives in the left-hand corner of the area to smash a first-time shot over the bar.

  63. 13 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Our first booking of the day. Germany's Miroslav Klose chases back to try to win possession but clips Branislav Ivanovic. More clumsy than anything else.

  64. 15 mins Commentary  

    I already like the look of Milos Krasic down the right flank for Serbia and he has just won a free-kick in a dangerous position on that side of the area. Milan Jovanovic floats it over to the back post but nobody is able to make contact with it. Chance gone.

  65. 20 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Another booking.. Two of them, actually - both for Serbia. Branislav Ivanovic catches Lukas Podolski late, quickly followed by a lunge by Aleksandar Kolarov on Thomas Mueller (I think).

  66. 22 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Not many chances so far, but plenty of yellow cards - two apiece now. Germany's Sami Khedira tangles with Milos Krasic and referee Alberto Undiano is reaching for his pocket again...

  67. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Pat Nevin  

    "The bookings Serbia are racking up are needless. Totally needless."

  68. 28 mins Commentary  

    It's not happening for either side at the moment. Germany's Thomas Mueller has massively over-hit a couple of crosses from the right and Serbia just can't keep the ball outside of their own half. No more bookings to tell you about either, which makes a change I suppose.

  69. Twitter  

    From HibaMS: "The game's slow pace is driving me crazy!!"

  70. 34 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Serbia's first effort on goal for a little while. Philipp Lahm becomes the fifth man to be shown yellow after a wild tackle catches Milos Krasic on the edge of the area. Aleksandar Kolarov steps up to take the free-kick... and curls it a couple of yards wide. I think Manuel Neuer had it covered anyway.

  71. 37 mins RED CARD  

    Crazy. But it was bound to happen, with the number of yellow cards that Spanish referee is Alberto Undiano has been flashing. Miroslav Klose catches Dejan Stankovic: It's innocuous, but it's his second booking - and it means he's off.

  72. 38 mins GOAL Germany 0-1 Serbia  

    It's all happening in Port Elizabeth. Germany, still rocking from Miroslav Klose's red card, are now behind too. Milos Krasic crosses, Nikola Zigic knocks it down and Milan Jovanovic is all alone to turn the ball home from close range. Germany are in big trouble now.

  73. 43 mins Commentary  

    I'm told that Miroslav Klose is the first German to be sent off in a World Cup match since Carsten Ramelow against Cameroon in 2002. It will be very interesting to see how they react to this...

  74. 45 mins Commentary  

    Germany may only have 10 men but they have just come within inches of an equaliser. After a couple of corners are cleared, Mesut Ozil's cross is punched away by Vladimir Stojkovic - but only as far as Sami Khedira, who slams his shot against the bar.

  75. HALF-TIME Germany 0-1 Serbia  
  76. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Shearer  

    "We have got a really fussy referee who has ruined the game for Germany. The red card completely changed the face of the match and Group D is wide open if this score stays the same."

  77. 13:22 Commentary  

    By the way, Serbia's Milan Jovanovic, who is set to join Liverpool later this summer, celebrated his goal by jumping in the (dry) moat that separates the pitch from the stands. I think he quite enjoyed that too!

  78. Twitter  

    From optajoe: "11 - Spanish referee Alberto Undiano Mallenco gave 11 red cards in 17 games in La Liga last season. Bullish."

  79. Twitter  

    From randalthor1812: "Worst referee so far in WC ruined a potentially great game , out of 6 bookings 2 may be justified, just awful."

  80. 13:30 Commentary  

    Serbia get the second half under way... no changes from either side yet.

  81. 47 mins Commentary  

    Germany are the first to get forward but it's not a clear-cut chance. Bastian Schweinsteiger has the ball on the left-hand side of the area and fizzes a fierce ball across the face of goal - not sure whether it was a cross or a shot... but it was well wide anyway.

  82. 51 mins Commentary  

    I'm going to be holding a World Cup Q&A with Fulham boss Roy Hodgson later this afternoon. If you've got any questions for him, fire them to me on Twitter at chisbevan_bbc

  83. 54 mins Commentary  

    Germany are definitely coming forward with more intent so far in this half, but then they have to, don't they? Bastian Schweinsteiger tries a snap-shot from the edge of the area that Vladimir Stojkovic makes a bit of a meal of... he can't catch it but he keeps it out so I suppose that's good enough.

  84. 56 mins YELLOW CARD  

    We hadn't seen a yellow card for a while but normal service has just been resumed by referee Alberto Undiano. Neven Subotic is booked after bringing down Mesut Ozil.

  85. 59 mins PENALTY missed by Germany  

    Lukas Podolski has just gone close twice in quick succession for Germany but he's just wasted a golden chance to level. Referee Alberto Undiano points to the spot after Nemanja Vidic handles a cross from the right... but Podolski's low spot-kick is weak and easily saved by Vladimir Stojkovic

  86. 67 mins HITS THE WOODWORK  

    Germany are living very dangerously indeed. Serbia play in Milan Jovanovic after a neat build-up, and he picks his spot from the edge of the area - but sees the ball cannon back off the post. Unlucky.

  87. 69 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    It's change o'clock. A double substitution by Germany sees Marko Marin and Cacau come on for Mesut Ozil and Thomas Mueller. Serbia have replaced with Milos Ninkovic with the more defensive-minded Gojko Kacar.

  88. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Pat Nevin  

    "Thomas Mueller's done well and looked very dangerous. But he's shattered."

  89. 74 mins HITS THE WOODWORK  

    Nikola Zigic, who will be in the Premier League with Birmingham next season, should have just sealed it for Serbia - he rises highest to meet a cross from the right but can't keep his header down and it shaves the top of the bar.

  90. SMS  

    Daz from Essex: "Germans missing penalties, whatever next - free-flowing football from England?"

  91. 77 mins YELLOW CARD  

    The only previous penalty miss for Germany in regulation play was by Uli Hoeness in 1974 against Poland. It looks like it could be very costly today too - time is running out for them now. By the way, Bastian Schweinsteiger has become the latest player to have been shown yellow - he was booked for bundling over Aleksandar Kolarov.

  92. 80 mins Commentary  

    A couple more changes to tell you about. Mario Gomez is on for Holger Badstuber in Germany's final roll of the dice - they have just three men at the back now - and Serbia have also made all three changes with Radosav Petrovic replacing Zdravko Kuzmanovic and Danko Lazovic on for goalscorer Milan Jovanovic.

  93. 84 mins Commentary  

    Germany are getting more and more desperate, and leaving more and more space at the back. Serbia should take advantage on the break but Radosav Petrovic's pass for Milos Krasic is a poor one... the ball runs out of play.

  94. 86 mins Commentary  

    Poor Lukas Podolski has now had six shots on goal this afternoon - all of them off target - as well as seeing that penalty saved. His latest effort swerved away from goal after he let fly from the left-edge of the area.

  95. 89 mins Commentary  

    Serbia have got a ridiculous amount of space when they break forward... and men over too. They cannot make it count, though, because Milos Krasic overhits his cross despite having a couple of team-mates to aim for.

  96. SMS  

    Dan from Luton: "Germany being opened up way to easily in wide areas. Serbia should have sealed this game by now!"

  97. 90 mins INJURY TIME  

    Philipp Lahm hoists a cross into the box but it is easy for Vladimir Stojkovic to collect. Ten-man Germany have three minutes of injury time to find an equaliser but they look tired, and short of ideas too.

  98. 92 mins Commentary  

    Serbia survive a spell where the ball was pinging around their area - the referee blows for a foul on Dejan Stankovic, leaving Germany boss Joachim Loew to take his frustration out on a water bottle in his technical area.

  99. FULL-TIME Germany 0-1 Serbia  

    Wow. A famous win for Serbia that blows Group D wide open - they join Germany and Ghana on three points. The Germans, who had Miroslav Klose sent off for two softish bookings - are left to rue that missed penalty... they never really looked like equalising after that.

  100. Twitter  

    From michaelgrayer: "This shows you can never jump to conclusions based on a single game."

  101. 14:34 Commentary  

    That sets up Group D very nicely indeed for Saturday's game beteen Ghana and Australia but it is Group C that we will focus our attention on for the rest of today. First up, Jonathan Stevenson will take you through Slovenia v the United States, followed by England's clash with Algeria. Hold on to your hats... I'll see you again tomorrow.

By Sam Lyon

Serbia brought 10-man Germany crashing back down to earth with a narrow win in Port Elizabeth that blows qualification from Group D wide open.

An opening-game rout of Australia had German fans and critics predicting a run deep into the World Cup tournament, with national newspaper Bild declaring: "We're going to blow you all away".

But Serbia were always likely to prove a different proposition to a weak Australia side forced to play more than half an hour a man down, and after frontman Miroslav Klose had been harshly dismissed for two bookings in the first half, Germany failed to rally sufficiently to force an equaliser against Radomir Antic's stubborn side.

Liverpool-bound Milan Jovanovic proved the match-winner with a 35th-minute volley, but in truth the result was as much down to the Germans' poor finishing - not least from Lukas Podolski who missed a penalty amid a hatful of chances.

And referee Alberto Undiano Mallenco of Spain played no small part in influencing proceedings with a series of baffling decisions and yellow cards.

It means Germany, Serbia and Ghana all stand on three points ahead of the Africans' second group match against the Aussies on Saturday.

Germany, though, will feel aggrieved at a result that almost entirely centred around Klose's dismissal.

For the first half hour before that, in the face of a Serbian defence far more disciplined than the Australian backline had been on Sunday, Germany were patient and measured in attack, Podolski flashing a volley narrowly wide and playmaker Mesut Ozil again impressing.

But just a minute after referee Mallenco brandished a second yellow card to Klose - both for innocuous trips - Serbia grabbed what proved to be their winner.

The lively Milan Krasic produced a fine cross from the right that was nodded down by Birmingham City new-boy Nikola Zigic and slammed home from close range by Jovanovic.

Thereafter, with Serbia dropping deeper and deeper despite their numerical advantage, Germany controlled possession and had a series of chances to level the scores.

Sami Khedira slammed a vicious shot against the bar 16 yards out, while Podolski wasted two glorious passes from Ozil when he clipped the first wide and the second into the side-netting.

Neither chance was as good as the next, though, when he saw his tame penalty saved by Serbia keeper Vladimir Stojkovic after Nemanja Vidic's inexplicable handball in the box.

It was only Germany's second penalty miss in a World Cup outside of a shoot-out, their first by Uli Hoeness in 1974, and it proved crucial.

Playing on the counter, Serbia - much improved from a display against Ghana that did the talent in their side no justice - twice hit the woodwork, with Jankovic curling left-footed on to the foot of Manuel Neuer's post and Zigic heading on to the bar from another Krasic cross.

Unlike Germany, though, they were not made to rue their profligacy, seeing out a win that gives Antic's side a real chance of reaching the second round.

As for Joachim Loew's side, their first World Cup group-stage defeat since 1986 means only a victory over Ghana next Wednesday will guarantee them a place in the last 16.

Germany Germany Flag 0-1 Serbia Flag Serbia FT

(HT 0-1)

 Jovanovic, 38






  • Venue: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
  • Referee: A Undiano Mallenco
  • Attendance: 38,294
Germany     Serbia
  • Possession 51%
  • Attempts on target 4
  • Attempts off target 9
  • Corners 7
  • Fouls 18

Projected table based on current scores

Group A

Group A teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Uruguay 3 2 1 0 4 0 4 7
Mexico 3 1 1 1 3 2 1 4
South Africa 3 1 1 1 3 5 -2 4
France 3 0 1 2 1 4 -3 1

Group B

Group B teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Argentina 3 3 0 0 7 1 6 9
South Korea 3 1 1 1 5 6 -1 4
Greece 3 1 0 2 2 5 -3 3
Nigeria 3 0 1 2 3 5 -2 1

Group C

Group C teams P W D L F A GD PTS
USA 3 1 2 0 4 3 1 5
England 3 1 2 0 2 1 1 5
Slovenia 3 1 1 1 3 3 0 4
Algeria 3 0 1 2 0 2 -2 1

Group D

Group D teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Germany 3 2 0 1 5 1 4 6
Ghana 3 1 1 1 2 2 0 4
Australia 3 1 1 1 3 6 -3 4
Serbia 3 1 0 2 2 3 -1 3

Group E

Group E teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Netherlands 3 3 0 0 5 1 4 9
Japan 3 2 0 1 4 2 2 6
Denmark 3 1 0 2 3 6 -3 3
Cameroon 3 0 0 3 2 5 -3 0

Group F

Group F teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Paraguay 3 1 2 0 3 1 2 5
Slovakia 3 1 1 1 4 5 -1 4
New Zealand 3 0 3 0 2 2 0 3
Italy 3 0 2 1 4 5 -1 2

Group G

Group G teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Brazil 3 2 1 0 5 2 3 7
Portugal 3 1 2 0 7 0 7 5
Ivory Coast 3 1 1 1 4 3 1 4
North Korea 3 0 0 3 1 12 -11 0

Group H

Group H teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Spain 3 2 0 1 4 2 2 6
Chile 3 2 0 1 3 2 1 6
Switzerland 3 1 1 1 1 1 0 4
Honduras 3 0 1 2 0 3 -3 1

Get involved

  • SMS: Text us on +44 7786200666
  • Twitter: Tag your tweets with #BBCWorldCup
  • 606: Comment and debate
  • World Cup Have Your Say: Join the BBC's global football conversation