With Germany knowing that they would need to at least match Morocco’s result in the concurrent game to progress to the round-of-sixteen, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg named two changes to her starting eleven – with Lea Schüller replacing Lina Magull, and Marina Hegering stepping in for the injured Sara Doorsoun.
KOR: Kim Jung-Mi; Jang Sel-Gi, Shim Seo-Yeon, Kim Hye-Ri, Choo Hyo-Joo; Choe Yu-Ru, Ji So-Yun, Lee Young-Ju, Cho So-Hyun, Chun Ga-Ram; Casey Phair
GER: Frohms; Hagel, Hegering, Hendrich, Huth; Däbritz, Oberdorf; Bühl, Popp, Brand; Schüller
Just two minutes into this nailbiting encounter in Brisbane, Casey Phair looked to fire South Korea into a shock lead. The 16-year-old found herself bearing down on goal, though her eventual shot was palmed wide and onto the post by Merle Frohms.
Yet that lead would come less than five minutes later, as Cho So-Hyun latched onto a sublime through ball from Lee Young-Ju, taking a touch before rifling an effort into the bottom-left corner. Despite still being in the very early stages of the match, Germany would be bowing out if the result stayed like this.
The DFB-Team were keen to find a way back into the match almost immediately, as Lea Schüller sought to tee up Klara Bühl – but her effort was dragged well wide of the woodwork, as Germany’s first real opportunity of the match went begging. The Bayern Munich star squandered another opportunity moments later, as she blasted a headed effort over the crossbar from Svenja Huth’s cross.
But despite a largely unimpressive first-half performance, Germany found themselves heading into the interval level after Alexandra Popp was able to equalise mere minutes before the break. Another cross from Svenja Huth was delivered into the box, but this time Alexandra Popp was able to leap on to it, nodding it down into the bottom-right corner to ensure the DFB-Team’s blushes would be spared.
While there was certainly an air of optimism amongst the German squad as they headed down the tunnel, that would soon be shattered by the news that Morocco had taken the lead against Colombia – a result that would see the Germans bow out if the two scorelines remained the same.
Alexandra Popp thought she would be the German hero once more, as she thumped another headed effort over the line following a tidy flick-on from Lea Schüller. Despite injuring herself in the process, the VfL Wolfsburg star was fine to continue – but was visibly disappointed when VAR ruled that the goal wouldn’t stand, as she was offside when she received the ball from Lea Schüller. It looked as though she would bag her second moments later though, as yet another cross from Svenja Huth saw the forward thump a headed effort against the woodwork.
With twenty minutes still to play, Germany looked under threat as Ji So-Yun’s inswinging corner delivery looked to cause chaos inside the penalty area – nearly sailing into the net uncontested, but for a fine save from Merle Frohms.
But deep in stoppage time, Sydney Lohmann would apply fierce pressure to the South Korean goalkeeper – driving an effort marginally wide of the post before sending an effort just over the woodwork. Still though, the Germans couldn’t find the all-important goal.
A draw for Germany, coupled with Morocco’s win over Colombia, means that the DFB-Team’s Women’s World Cup journey comes to an end here in Brisbane. They become the third major nation to suffer a shock elimination at this tournament, joining Brazil and Canada on the plane home. South Korea’s campaign also comes to a close following this match. It’s Colombia and Morocco that progress – las Cafeteras will face Jamaica on August 8, while Morocco will be drawn against France on the same date.