German train keeps rolling over US
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Germany scored three times in the first half today to propel themselves to an easy 4-0 win over USA and into the quarter-finals of Mexico 2011, where they will meet old enemies England.

It was a wet night at the Estadio Corregidora in Queretaro, but the European runners-up were sure-footed from the start as Koray Guenter, Mitchell Weiser, Samed Yesil and Marvin Ducksch scored to add four more goals to an already impressive tournament for the Germans. After breezing through the group stage with nine points and a plus-ten goal difference, another lopsided victory for the Nationalelf confirms their place among the favourites for gold.

Steffen Freund’s group had the measure of their opponents right from the opening whistle, and Nico Perrey might have started the scoring in the opening minute with a shot from the game's first corner-kick. Ducksch went close three times in the first quarter-hour, including hitting the post, but it was Guenter who put Germany ahead in the 20th minute with a header from a quickly-taken corner.

The US, who exit the U-17s for the third time on the trot in the round of 16, were kept in the match by goalkeeper Kendall McIntosh, and they had chances to respond. Alejandro Guido went close over the bar from a free-kick, and Mario Rodriguez narrowly missed getting the better of the German goalkeeper in the 35th minute as they both stretched for a through ball. The spilled rebound from that exchange was just cleared by the impressive defender Guenter.

Shortly after, Wilmer Cabrera’s Americans were further behind as Yesil set up Weiser with a nice cut-back from the right side. The disorganised USA defence could do nothing to stop Weiser, who has scored in each of the last three matches. The red, white and blue backline was again found wanting just minutes before half-time as McIntosh and the woodwork saved the Americans again, before Yesil capitalised on confusion in the box to make it three by the break.

A fourth goal early in the second half, set up by Cimo Roecker and scored with a simple turn and shot by Ducksch, killed off any hopes of a US fight-back, and the only question after that was how many would the Germans put in the net. A combination of brave goalkeeping by McIntosh and ultimately over-elaborate build-up play conspired to keep the scoreline 4-0.

The best US chance of the night came in the last minutes as Nathan Smith unleashed a wicked effort on goal from the right corner of the box. German keeper Odisseas Vlachodimos showed he was no slouch between the posts with an acrobatic fingertip save when it seemed like the ball would curl in at the left angle.