Stade Vélodrome, Marseille, 07.07.2014
– / Greizmann pen 45.+2., 72.
Coming into this classic semi-final in Marseille, there was plenty of history on Germany’s side. The Nationalmannschaft had won their last six semi-finals against tournament hosts – a record stretching back to the World Cup in Sweden in 1958 – and had not lost to France in a major tournament since the third place playoff game in… 1958.
Records are made to be broken however, and Les Bleus proved to be the more clinical of the two teams in a match where Germany threatened to smother the hosts into submission. For all of their pressure, possession, craft and fine play however, Jogi Löw’s men were beaten by a French outfit that was, ultimately, smarter and sharper in front of goal. Germany can look to the long trail of fitness woes, the injury to Jérôme Boateng during the match and some suspect decisions from Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli, but it was their lack of firepower up front that did for them in the end.
Unlike Warsaw in 2012, there were no regrets after the match. The coach made the right decisions in terms of team selection and the team did everything right – apart from score a goal. Germany were undoubtedly the better team on the night, but it was France – powered by two-goal hero Antoine Griezmann – who progressed to the final in Paris.
Germany: Neuer – Kimmich, Höwedes, Boateng (61. Mustafi), Hector – Schweinsteiger (c) (79. Sané) – Can (67. Götze), Kroos – Draxler , Özil – Müller
France: Lloris (c) – Sagna, Koscielny, Umtiti, Evra – Pogba, Matuidi – Sissoko, Griezmann (90.+2. Cabaye), Payet (71. Kanté) – Giroud (78. Gignac)
Referee: Nicola Rizzoli (Italy)
Assistants: Elenito Di Liberatore (Italy), Mauro Tonolini (Italy)
Goal Assistants: Daniele Orsato (Italy), Antonio Damato (Italy)
Fourth Official: Damir Skomina (Slovenia)
Reserve Assistant: Jure Praprotnik (Slovenia)
Referee Observer: Hugh Dallas (Scotland)
Yellow Cards: Evra, Kanté / Can, Schweinsteiger, Özil, Draxler
Red Cards: – / –
Ball Possession: 65% / 35%
Attempts on Target: 6 / 7
Attempts off Target: 6 / 4
Corners: 6 / 5
Fouls Committed: 8 / 12
Man of the Match: Antoine Griezmann (France)