EURO 2020 analytics: England vs Germany – download our report
The EURO 2020 round of 16 threw up one of the most historic and storied fixtures in international football – England vs Germany, with the match being held at Wembley, for even more grandeur. England came into this match having topped Group D, with two wins and a draw and having kept a clean sheet in all three matches, while Germany needed a last-ditch rescue effort in their final Group F game against Hungary to rescue their hopes and qualify for the round of 16.
Gareth Southgate changed England’s system for this match, as expected, moving to a back three to match Germany. Germany had destroyed Portugal down the flanks through their use of wing-backs, and Southgate was keen to avoid the same fate. As a result, Kieran Trippier came back into the side at right wing-back, with Kyle Walker moving to the back three, and Bukayo Saka kept his place in the XI after an excellent performance against the Czech Republic in England’s final group game. The rest of the side was as expected.
Joachim Low sent out his first-choice XI in Germany’s 3-4-3 system, with the exception of Ilkay Gundogan, who had a niggle. Leon Goretzka, the scorer of the equalizer against Hungary, came into midfield instead, with Timo Werner, Thomas Muller and Kai Havertz in front of them.
Germany started strongly, taking control in midfield and pushing forward whenever possible, but England began to grow into the game soon and it was an evenly-matched affair at half-time, with only Timo Werner having managed to have a clear sight of goal. Jordan Pickford made a good low save from the Chelsea striker to keep things level, and the match continued to be balanced on a knife edge well into the second half. Southgate’s introduction of Jack Grealish around the 70 minute mark changed the game – the Aston Villa playmaker immediately began to draw Joshua Kimmich’s attention from right wing-back, freeing Luke Shaw on the overlap, and this is where England’s first goal came from – Shaw overlapped and received the ball from Grealish before sending a brilliant cross into the box that Raheem Sterling pounced on for his 13th goal in his last 18 matches for England. Germany almost had parity a few minutes later – Sterling’s wayward pass was intercepted by Havertz, who played Muller in behind the England defence. The Bayern Munich forward raced through one-on-one, but with just Pickford to beat, dragged his shot wide of the post. England then made sure of their progress in the 86th minute, when Shaw won the ball back centrally and fed it to Grealish, wide on the left, who delivered a good, if slightly awkward cross that Harry Kane was able to meet with a diving header and send the ball past Manuel Neuer to spark pandemonium in the Wembley stands.
Thus, England defeated Germany in a major tournament for the first time since EURO 2000, and thus secured progress to the EURO 2020 quarter-finals, where they will now face Ukraine in Rome. This marks the end of Joachim Low’s tenure as Germany head coach, a position he had held since 2006, guiding Germany to the World Cup in 2014 along with several other excellent performances. Check out our analytics report from this EURO 2020 match for the key statistics, data and visualisations.