Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Schuerrle rescues Germany; Valbuena comes up big
by Paul Kennedy, June 30th, 2014 10:42PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  france, germany, world cup 2014

MOST COMMENTED

[WORLD CUP: Three Stars] Germany's depth of youth talent is one of the reasons it was considered one of the favorites to win the World Cup, and 23-year-old sub Andre Schuerrle rescued the Germans in overtime against Algeria, which got a phenomenal game from nomadic goalie Rais M'Bolhi. The win set up a date Friday with France, which has had multiple standouts in its march to the quarterfinals, none bigger than its little man, Mathieu Valbuena.

1. ANDRE SCHUERRLE. The depth of the big European teams is what is keeping them in the World Cup. Klaas Jan Huntelaar came off the bench for Robin van Persie and assisted on the tying goal and scored the winning penalty kick for the Netherlands against Mexico. The insertion of Antoine Griezmann on the left wing turned around France's game against Nigeria.

And Schuerrle was the difference for Germany, which struggled mightily against Algeria in their first meeting since the North Africa team's famous victory at the 1982 World Cup. He scored on backheel flick that to put it ahead in overtime and had the pass that eventually led to Mesut Ozil's goal in the 2-1 win over the Fennecs.

“We’d have preferred to win in 90 minutes, but the Algerians did a good job,” said Schuerrle. “We don’t care how we did it, the main thing is we’re in the quarterfinals.”

2. MATHIEU VALBUENA. Sometimes it takes years for a player to make his mark on his national team.

Valbuena, 29, was on the French team that was a World Cup embarrassment in South Africa four years ago -- he played one game, against Mexico, but admits he did not do himself justice -- and he went to Euro 2012 two years and did not even play a minute. The 5-foot-6 winger thought he might not ever get his chance with the Bleus, but he overcame a poor season at Marseille -- his club since 2006 -- and has been one of the standouts on their march to the quarterfinals

His service on corner kicks decided the Bleus' round-of-16 match against Nigeria, delivering the ball Super Eagles keeper Vincent Enyeama could not handle on Paul Pogba's opening ball and playing the ball in to Griezmann that Joseph Yobo turned into his own goal.

3. RAIS M'BOLHI. M'Bolhi belies the notion that you have to be a star at the club level to play in the World Cup. The 28-year-old M'Bolhi, who is not even a full-time starter at his Bulgarian club CSKA Sofia, started in his second straight World Cup for Algeria.

He shut out England and was seconds away from also holding the USA to a 0-0 tie four years ago, but he had the game of his life on Monday against Germany. He made saves on Toni Kroos and Mario Goetze late in the first half that may be the best double save of the World Cup, and his diving save on Thomas Mueller late in the game sent it to overtime.

Not bad for a player who has never made it in France, where he was born, and struggled during stints in Scotland, Greece and Ukraine before settling in Bulgaria, not exactly known as an outpost for foreign players.


No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
U.S. U-17s boys romp again, beat Turkey, 5-1     
After opening the Nike International Friendlies with a 7-1 win over Portugal, the U.S. U-17 boys ...
U-20 WWC: USA falls to Japan in third-place game     
Japan outshot the USA 29-3 while beating the Americans 1-0 in the third-place game at the ...
U.S. Abroad: Alvarado headed to Santos for Torneo Clausura    
Ventura Alvarado is back in the starting lineup at Mexican giant Club America, which tied Necaxa, ...
U.S. Abroad: Gooch faces three-month layoff    
Sunderland's Lynden Gooch, who made his English Premier League debut in August and U.S. national team ...
What They're Saying: Roberto Assis    
"It is a very difficult time. Later on, if there is a contact, we can talk. ...
Women's College Cup: Upstarts battle former champs    
The Division I women's season is down to its final weekend. Georgetown and West Virginia are ...
MLS Cup Countdown: Stars escape major injuries    
Both MLS Cup finalists had key players limp off in the second legs of the conference ...
MLS Preseason: Tournaments set at three sites    
The 2016 MLS season doesn't wrap up for another week, but teams are already finalizing plans ...
What They're Saying: Gareth Southgate    
"The days are gone from when I was younger where we did have beers after a ...
MLS Moves: Minnesota signs first two players    
MLS expansion team Minnesota United signed a pair of defenders -- Justin Davis and Kevin Venegas ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives