Euro 2024: Germany are first in the last 16 with a 2-0 win over Hungary

Stuttgart, June 20 (IANS): Goals from Jamal Musiala and Ilkay Gundogan saw hosts Germany become the first team to confirm their place in the Euro 2024 knockout stages with a comfortable win against Hungary on Wednesday.

Germany, who had started their campaign with a 5-1 win against Scotland, recorded their second win in the four-team Group A and stormed into the knockout stages of the competition. They now have six points from two games with Switzerland on four, Scotland on 1 and Hungary yet to open their account.

Germany found it a more difficult evening than their 5-1 victory against Scotland on matchday 1. Julian Nagelsmann’s side had enough to take the three points, which ensured that they were at least the best third team in the group stage would end. .

After an even opening, Musiala became the first player to score more than once in this edition of the European Championship, adding to his strike against Scotland last week by firing in from close range to put the hosts ahead.

Manuel Neuer, making his 17th European Championship appearance and leveling Gianluigi Buffon’s goalkeeping record, was called into action after 26 minutes as he dived to his right to brilliantly save a curling free-kick from Dominik Szoboszlai.

Toni Kroos came close to doubling Germany’s lead ten minutes into the second half, but his deflected effort was cleared by Péter Gulacsi before Barnabas Varga headed narrowly over for Hungary.

The match was effectively settled when Maximilian Mittelstädt’s low cross was beautifully struck into the net by Gundogan, securing Germany’s place in the last 16.

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