Kroos relieved to make amends for Germany

Mesut Ozil

False start- World Cup Champions Germany join unwanted list

Sweden had scored in the first half on a clever counterattack, and with its one goal secured, chose to settle into some of the most defensive football seen at the World Cup so far. On Wednesday, Mexico will face Sweden and Germany will take on South Korea, with every team but South Korea in control of its destiny.

The game's first tally wasn't pretty by any means, but Ola Toivonen did just enough to put Sweden on top in the 32nd minute.

The ball arced over helpless keeper Robin Olsen into the net, sparking an explosion of German joy on the bench and in the stands as the reigning champions kick-started their World Cup campaign.

"We missed a couple of good chances but I appreciated the spirit of the team, we never lost hope of winning the match".

Man of the Match: While Roos will receive all the glory, Reus helped set the pace for Germany and nixed all of Sweden's momentum with his goal.

El Tri followed up their stunning victory over Germany in the Group F opener with a convincing 2-1 win over South Korea on Saturday.

Germany had been inundated with criticism after losing to Mexico in the opening match, but Kroos was pleased to make those who doubted him and his teammates wait for any vindication.

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Neuer saved the Germans from being 2-0 down at halftime, diving acrobatically to deflect Berg's header from Sebastian Larsson's stoppage-time free kick.

Work still needs to be done with Mexico needing to avoid defeat against Sweden to be sure of making the last 16 for the seventh straight World Cup.

Supporters watching on big screens at the Brandenburg Gate huddled nervously under grey clouds and drizzle, before throwing their umbrellas away as Toni Kroos' late victor saved Germany.

Joachim Low's side, who ended the match with 10 men following Jerome Boateng's dismissal, were in grave danger of crashing out of the World Cup when they trailed at half time but second-half goals by Marco Reus and Kroos improved their chances of reaching the knockout stages. While a late goal from South Korea made the score close, the game, in reality, wasn't. Mexico, which has been among the more impressive teams in the tournament with two wins, could be eliminated if it doesn't get at least a draw against Sweden.

It went from looking like Mexico and Sweden would be through, and now everything is up for grabs.

Despite an unimpressive first half, Belgium beat Panama 3-0 in its 2018 FIFA World Cup Group G opener last week.

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