Five-star Germans cruise
© Foto-net

Germany flexed their muscles in their New Zealand 2008 debut, moving top of Group B with a resounding 5-0 victory over Costa Rica.

The Ticas, who were reduced to 10 players late in the match, offered brave resistance but goals from Lynn Mester, Dzsenifer Maroszan (2), Tird Knaak and Tabea Kemme secured the European champions a predictably comfortable win.

With Alexandra Popp dangerous on the left side and Leon Maier threatening on the right, it wasn't long before they made the breakthrough, Mester cushioning Maier's cross on her chest and beating the beating the keeper from close range.

On 34 minutes, Germany doubled their lead when Maroszan fired home a tremendous looping volley and within nine minutes, the same played increased their advantage after a terrific solo run from Tabea Kemme.

This essentially left Costa Rica with a task of damage limitation and they must have feared a drubbing when Tird Knaak made it 4-0 just six minutes into the second half.

As it was, despite Costa Rica losing Gabriela Guillen to a second yellow card, Germany managed only one more goal, Kemme claiming it with a wonderful shot at the end of a neat move.