Euro 2016: Julian Draxler's gorgeous run sets up Mario Gomez

Posted June 27, 2016

"We played more important and more hard matches in qualifying, against Spain for example, because without these matches we managed to win we wouldn't be here". Having recovered from their opening defeat to Wales with a win over under-performing Russian Federation, they stifled England with a robust defensive display to secure a valuable point. He made his global debut in 2012 and first netted for Germany in a friendly 4-3 loss to the United States in June 2013.

Slovakia are returning to the scene of their only win so far in France, a Hamsik-inspired 2-1 defeat of Russian Federation on June 15. "Boateng and [Mats] Hummels won nearly every challenge, they were focused, they helped build the play and then Boateng scored the goal".

"There were several players who weren't at their best".

"We played Germany twice in a month [including a pre-tournament 3-1 friendly victory], one win, one loss".

Slovakia coach Jan Kozak acknowledged his side had lost to a better team and said Germany could go all the way.

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Despite having yet to find a flawless mix in attack, Germany has had more than double the efforts on goal than its opponent in the entire tournament.

"They have great quality and this will be a very demanding match, but we played them a few weeks back and won on their home ground", winger Vladimir Weiss told UEFA. They have really started their tournament today. While they have yet to concede a goal, they did have a noticeable problem with scoring as they only put up three goals in three games.

Slovakia will now move their focus to the qualifying campaign for the 2018 World Cup, in which they will come up against England, Scotland, Slovenia, Lithuania and Malta.

"They (Germany) are able to intensify their performances".

Tonight's game will be the 11th encounter between the two sides (with Slovakia as an independant nation), with every match so far having a definitive result. Draxler found space in the box in the 38th minute, but his shot deflected off the shin of a defender and into the welcoming arms of Kozacik.

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However, after much criticism of the pitch in Lille, a new surface was laid on Thursday.

Goals from Gomez and Julian Draxler gave the Germans the comfortable victory and saw Slovakia exit the competition.

He was substituted in the second half on Sunday along with midfielder Sami Khedira in order to prevent either player collecting a yellow card that would have seen them suspended for the quarter-finals. Loew is unlikely to risk the 27-year-old if there is any doubt over his fitness with a potential quarterfinal against Spain or Italy to come.

There was never likely to be any way back for Slovakia, and Germany now head to Bordeaux on Saturday.

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