[GROUP D] In a tournament desperate for goals, Germany continued its recent history of goalfest openers with a 4-0 win over Australia. Thanks to a late penalty
kick, Ghana beat Serbia, 1-0, to become the first African nation to notch a win. Here's what we liked and didn't like about the opening Group D games ...
What we liked ...
-- Germany started its 2002 World Cup campaign with a 8-0 win over Saudi Arabia and four years ago came out of the gate with a 4-2 win over Costa Rica. On Sunday, the Germans thumped Australia, 4-0
-- Coach Joachim Loew kept his faith in the striker duo of Miroslav Klose and Lukas Podolski even though they managed just three and two goals, respectively, last season for their Bundesliga clubs. They scored Germany’s first two goals against Australia.
-- The first Africa-hosted World Cup has six entrants from the continent. After a South Africa tie and losses by Nigeria and Algeria, Ghana became the first African team to celebrate a win, downing Serbia, 1-0, thanks to a penalty kick by Asamoah Gyan.
What we didn't like ...
-- For a brutal foul from behind on Bastian Schweinsteiger, Australia’s Tim Cahill received the tournament’s first straight red card (and was the fourth player ejected in the first 10 games). Australia’s 19 fouls in the game are second only to France’s 20 in its tie with Uruguay.
-- Serbia lost all three games at the 2006 World Cup and extended that losing streak to on Sunday.
-- The crowd of 38,833 at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria for the Ghana-Serbia game was 4,000 short of capacity. Most of the empty seats were in the executive boxes.