Germany beats Nigeria 1-0 in Women’s World Cup
Simone Laudehr finished off a 54th-minute goalmouth scramble
with a thunderous volley high into the net to give Germany a 1-0
win over Nigeria and a place in the Women’s World Cup quarterfinals
At the other end, goalkeeper Nadine Angerer celebrated her 100th
international with a clean sheet which kept the host team perfect
with two victories, but hardly convincing in the three-week
tournament it is favored to win.
After France ran up a 4-0 win over Canada to also advance,
Germany will have to beat its neighbor next Tuesday if it wants to
top Group A. Nigeria was eliminated along with Canada.
”We are happy to advance but we have to work on our game,”
Germany coach Sylvia Neid said.
With Nigeria needing victory to stay in contention, Germany knew
the task ahead. And despite the support of a 48,817 sellout crowd,
it managed little beyond territorial domination.
In a sometimes rough game which referee Cha Sung-mi had trouble
controlling, Nigeria went head-to-head with Germany as much as
possible but was unable to create many chances against the two-time
Germany stuck with the same lineup as the one which beat Canada
2-1 in the opener, keeping veteran star Birgit Prinz in front of
her home crowd despite a disappointing opening game.
She was just as poor on Thursday. After a missed overhead kick
halfway through the game, she glanced upwards at the sky in
exasperation, knowing her poor form of the season has extended into
the World Cup. The 33-year-old Prinz is looking for one more goal
to become the first woman to score at least once in five World
Cups. She leads the all-time list with 14 goals.
It was bitter irony that just after Neid took Prinz off, the
”I substituted her because I wanted more pressure upfield,”
Midfielder Celia Okoyino Da Mbabi swung in a low free kick from
the left, a first stab for goal was smothered, and a shot from
Alexandra Popp was blocked but only as far as Laudehr, who blasted
Finally, the German flags went up, the roar of deliverance was
deafening, and Germany was on its way to the quarterfinals.
”It didn’t go smoothly,” Laudehr said.
”We knew that they would be tough because they needed three
points. They made our life difficult,” she said.
Even though Neid warned of a tough game, the fans eyed the
statistics instead. Germany beat Nigeria 8-0 in a friendly this
season. And overall, Germany was 6-for-6 with a 21-2 goal
Expectations of an easy game between the No. 2 and No. 27 in the
FIFA rankings were proven wrong, as Nigeria kept putting in
crunching tackles, was on edge all the time, and not ready to leave
the tournament easily.
But tougher opposition is coming up for Germany, with France
Germany: Nadine Angerer, Babett Peter, Saskia Bartusiak, Annike
Krahn, Linda Bresonik, Simone Laudehr, Kim Kulig, Melanie Behringer
(Alexandra Popp, 31), Celia Okoyino Da Mbabi (Fatmire Bajramaj,
87), Kerstin Garefrekes, Birgit Prinz (Inka Grings, 52).
Nigeria: Precious Dede, Faith Ikidi, Osinachi Ohale, Onome Ebi,
Helen Ukaonu, Stella Mbachu (Francisca Ordega, 85), Rita Chikwelu,
Ebere Orji (Amenze Aighewi, 63), Perpetua Nkwocha, Desire
Oparanozie, Sarah Michael (Uchechi Sunday, 70).