England 3-3 Germany: Player ratings as three Lions split the spoils in six-goal second-half thriller
England recovered from a 2-0 deficit to lead before Kai Havertz propelled Germany to level with death, wrapping up a 3-3 UEFA Nations League draw with all six goals plummeting in the second half.
Both nations come into the competition after defeats on Friday night, no doubt clouded by a brutal affair. Although England’s midfield pair struggled to offer some front foot pressure as the visitors built from the back, they were quick to rush past the back five, desperate to limit the space between the lines for Germany’s revamped forward line.
Hansi Flick’s side had more ball, but England threatened in transition, playing with more focus and urgency compared to their dismal loss to Italy – even though the bar was dangerously low.
Twice in the first half, Raheem Sterling found himself at the end of a hole dug on the counter. Each time, however, the Chelsea striker could only produce a lukewarm left-footed effort which was denied by Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Germany did not aim in the first half, even in the English box. Yet within six minutes of the restart, Harry Maguire offered the visitors a chance to head home from 12 yards out. The much-maligned Manchester United man lazily stroked a pass directly at the feet of Jamal Musiala, combining one error with another as he awkwardly knocked the teenager to the ground. Ilkay Gundogan coldly converted the penalty.
Encouraged by the opener, the four-time World Cup winners rocked the ball into the England half with an added boost of confidence. Timo Werner came off the bench to add another dimension to the German attack as he launched Havertz for a superb effort from the edge of the box that crashed off the post on its way towards the net in the 67th minute.
Against the tide of the game, the home team retreated. An England winger crossed for the other as Reece James curled a shot past Luke Shaw. Shaw equalized on the other side of the box and his firm effort rattled under Ter Stegen.
After going 526 minutes without a goal in open play, England had to wait just 185 seconds to find another as Gareth Southgate’s two substitutes combined. Bukayo Saka pushed his way through the crowd of white shirts and carried the ball the way to Mason Mount, who finished with Ter Stegen’s clean finish.
Saka was again heavily involved before Jude Bellingham got the ball past Nico Schlotterbeck in the German box. After a quick VAR review, Harry Kane emphatically converted the penalty to give England their third goal in the 11th minute.
However, another loop remained in this second half of the roller coaster. Serge Gnabry – another substitute impacting the contest – came in from afar. Nick Pope poured in a thunderous effort at the feet of Havertz to give the German a chance to get his second level and put Germany back in the 87th minute.
GK: Nick Pope – 4/10 – True to form, Pope was uncertain with the ball at his feet but surprisingly fragile with his gloves as well.
DC: John Stones – N/A – Sent off injured in the first half after a brilliant and sparkling 37 minutes.
DC: Eric Dier – 6/10 – Got his important frame out of the way when needed but was helped by the flood of redshirts England stuffed his box with when defending deep.
DC: Harry Maguire – 3/10 – Produced a double-edged error that will only fuel the raging fire that his inclusion in the squad has sparked.
RWB: Reece James – 5/10 – Bypassed on the sidelines of the contest as England leaned to their left to go forward.
WC: Jude Bellingham – 7/10 – Grew up in the game with his energy and contagious urgency.
WC: Declan Rice – 6/10 – Stormed into tackles with enthusiasm and exuberance if not efficiency.
ASF: Luke Shaw – 7/10 – Denied a fiendish assist in the first half as he offered England’s greatest penetrating passing threat before securing the goal that kickstarted the comeback.
RW: Phil Foden – 5/10 – Failure to choose the right option too often at the crucial moment.
ST: Harry Kane – 7/10 – Flashed an audacious volley attempt a mustache beyond the post before converting a more orthodox opening from 12 yards.
LW: Raheem Sterling – 6/10 – Harnessed his quick feet and spirit to sprint into the right space on the break but failed to match his run with a finish.
SUB: Kyle Walker (37′ for the Stones) – 6/10 – Bailed out his former Tottenham team-mate after Dier slipped into the box.
SUB: Bukayo Saka (66′ for Foden) – 7/10 – Transformer on the bench, injecting verve into England’s attack with unabashed frankness.
SUB: Mason Mount (66′ for Sterling) – 7/10 – Rolled up brilliantly and added a zip to England’s game in the final third.
UNDER: Jordan Henderson (90 + 1′ for Bellingham) – N/A
Coach: Gareth Southgate – 7/10 – Unmistakably inspired an improved performance, ensuring England’s two-man midfield wasn’t as overrun as it often is and actively impacting the game with his substitutions – for once.
GK: Marc-Andre ter Stegen – 6/10 – Kept the game scoreless as he anticipated Sterling’s effort superbly in the first half, unlucky to see Shaw’s attempt squirm on the line.
DD: Thilo Kehrer – 5/10 – The West Ham the defender was tasked with a flexible role, pushing forward into the England penalty area one minute while closing in on Sule the next.
DC: Niklas Sule – 6/10 – With a quickness that belied his heavy frame, Sule was adept at advancing with the ball on the tip of his toe.
CB: Nico Schlotterbeck – 4/10 – Took a proactive approach from the first whistle which cost him in the second half.
GM: David Raum – 5/10 – Provided the width down Germany’s left, both full-backs had the freedom to push high up the pitch.
CM: Joshua Kimmich – 6/10 – Passing between the centre-backs to collect the ball, Kimmich was the funnel through which Germany’s play flowed.
CM: Ilkay Gundogan – 6/10 – Just like in the 2013 Champions League final on this ground, Gundogan converted his penalty.
Morning: Jamal Musiala – 7/10 – Floating menacingly in the narrow slip of space, England tried to limit between their midfield line and their defence.
RW: Jonas Hofmann – 5/10 – Carried the ball well on the rare occasions when he had room to gallop. A bit harshly removed at half time.
ST: Kai Havertz – 7/10 – Anonymous in the first half but fully integral to a deeper role after the break.
LW: Leroy Sane – 5/10 – Buzzing to the left to provide another option in Germany’s crowded middle slice.
SUB: Timo Werner (46′ for Hofmann) – 6/10 – Offered a different threat with its jet-heeled pace.
SUB: Serge Gnabry (68′ for Sané) – 5/10
SUB: Robin Gosens (68′ for Raum) – 5/10
SUB: Thomas Muller (79′ for Musiala) – N/A
SUB: Armel Bella-Kotchap (90+1′ for Haverz) – N/A
Coach: Hansi Flick – 6/10 – Much like his counterpart, Flick’s substitutions undoubtedly influenced the contest – although they had to rely on an unreliable clinical finish.
Player of the Match – Kai Havertz