Down 1-0 and in the dying moments of the match, Germany put it all on the line – literally. The 2014 champions threw all their players forward, including their goalkeeper in a risky manouevre that would ultimately backfire.
Manuel Neuer is well known for his ball playing abilities, but the German goalkeeper was left red-faced when he was dispossessed in Korea’s half.
The Koreans were quick to launch a counter attack and score a crucial second goal through star player Son Heung-Min.
To add to the insult, Neuer’s mistake went viral.
I'm particularly pleased about South Korea's second goal.
Thing is, I like Neuer's sweeper keeper-ing when he's stopping attacks. But going up into midfield in open play and leaving the gaping? That's undue arrogance.
Deserved to be punished.
— Yomi Kazeem (@TheYomiKazeem) June 27, 2018
I can only aspire to being as optimistic about life as Manuel Neuer, bombing up field for a corner in the 98th minute when Germany needed to score three goals.
— Scott Innes (@Flying_Inside) June 27, 2018
Seeing the 2nd goal again I don't think I've fully comprehended what on earth Manuel Neuer was trying to do for those last few minutes
— Lars Pollmann (@LarsPollmann) June 27, 2018
Neuer proving today why goalkeepers should stick to……..goalkeeping
— phillygorman (@phillygorman) June 27, 2018
Despite his desperate mistake, Neuer shifted some of the blame and believes it would be “bitter and pathetic” for Germany’s players to revel in their past glories in the aftermath of their dreadful 2018 World Cup campaign.
The defending champions’ shambolic tournament came to a resounding end on Wednesday , as South Korea claimed a 2-0 victory in Kazan to ensure Germany finished bottom of Group F.
While Joachim Low’s side lifted the trophy in Brazil in 2014, they joined Spain, Italy and France in the list of teams to have been dumped out in the group stage following victory in the previous edition of the tournament.
And Neuer, who only returned from injury in time to captain Germany at this World Cup, insists Die Mannschaft cannot dwell on past achievements.
“We had it in our own hands, but we did not make it,” Neuer, who confirmed his intention to remain available for international selection, said.
“To revel in the past brings us nothing, that’s bitter and pathetic. Even if it had worked today, there would have been halts in the knockout phase. We just did not deserve it.
“We did not really convince in any game. Of course it is very disappointing.
“We need to analyse this and it has to be said very clearly that we just do not deserve it. Even after the three games, you have not seen in any game that there was a German team on the pitch, in front of which one has fear or respect.
“Even if we had made it in the last 16, everyone would have liked to play against us. How should we be dangerous to an opponent if we deliver such performances?
“I’ve always tried to take responsibility, always tried to take the team. In the locker room, during training and on the pitch. Of course, I am also responsible for it.”
Like Neuer, Thomas Muller broke through the ranks in Germany’s national team at World Cup 2010, although the Bayern Munich forward was benched for the crunch clash with South Korea, and the 28-year-old admitted the squad were embarrassed by their displays.
“No matter what we say now, it will not be right,” Muller told reporters.
“We are seriously disappointed and shocked. We are responsible for that. It is embarrassing that we will be eliminated from the table in this group.
“With this squad and these claims. We scored just one goal in three games and in each game we got a goal against us. Therefore, we are powerless against any argument.”