Toni Kroos and Marco Reus (l.-r.) were on target as ten-man Germany hit back from a goal down to win a dramatic 2018 FIFA World Cup Group F encounter with Sweden. - © © gettyimages / Michael Steele
Toni Kroos and Marco Reus (l.-r.) were on target as ten-man Germany hit back from a goal down to win a dramatic 2018 FIFA World Cup Group F encounter with Sweden. - © © gettyimages / Michael Steele
Bundesliga

Five things we learned from Germany vs. Sweden

Germany's 2018 FIFA World Cup hopes are alive and well (just!), but what else have we learned after their last-gasp victory over Sweden?

1) Manuel Neuer is still No.1

bundesliga.com handpicks the top five takeaways from the game, with an eye to the defending world champions' decisive encounter with Group F rivals South Korea in Kazan on 27 June.

Manuel Neuer was beaten for the second time in as many games against Sweden, but the Germany captain came up with some big first-half saves to thwart Marcus Berg. The Bayern Munich custodian could also be seen rallying the troops throughout the contest and kick-started a number of attacks with quick-thinking, inch-perfect passes and throws. Joachim Löw might not yet have settled on his best XI, but there's no questioning his decision to take Neuer - who only played three times in the Bundesliga last season due to injury - to the tournament.

- © imago

4) Mario Gomez brings the best out of Timo Werner

Another decisive roll of the dice saw VfB Stuttgart striker Mario Gomez enter the fray for Julian Draxler at the start of the second half, as Löw went 4-4-2. The 32-year-old's target-man qualities proved an immediate distraction for the Sweden defence and, although he missed chances to get on the scoresheet, his presence alone enabled strike partner Timo Werner to pull out wide and run at the opposition as he does so effectively when partnered with Yussuf Poulsen for RB Leipzig at club level. That’s exactly what happened in the second half in Sochi, his turn of pace not only teeing up Reus to level the score but also drawing the foul from Jimmy Durmaz to set up the match-winning free-kick.

- © gettyimages / Nelson Almeida

Click here for team news, build-up and coverage of Germany vs. South Korea!

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