Mexico stun holders Germany, Brazil held by Switzerland

first_imgWith games against Brazil and Switzerland to come, this was a key match for both sides hoping to further their qualification bids.Mexico stunned World Cup holders Germany, courtesy of a first-half Hirving Lozano strike.Impressive on the counter, Mexico went ahead when PSV Eindhoven’s Lozano fired low past Manuel Neuer.The Germans almost replied instantly as they went close through Toni Kroos, whose free-kick was pushed on to the bar by Guillermo Ochoa. Aleksandar Kolarov scored a stunning free-kick to give Serbia a deserved victory in their opening World Cup match against Costa Rica.In an encounter where Costa Rica rarely threatened, defender Giancarlo Gonzalez provided their best effort with an early header over the crossbar.After the first half-ended in a stalemate, Kolarov stepped up from 25-yards to bend his free-kick past Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas to give Serbia the lead in incredible fashion.It wasn’t until the 91st minute that Costa Rica recorded their first effort on goal of the second half as Serbia dominated, but they failed to find the net as Serbia held on to win the game – the victory was their first in a World Cup opener since 1998, However, Mexico continued to threaten on the break in an open game where the two sides amassed 39 shots between them. The second half saw Germany improve on a lacklustre first-half display but still Joachim Low’s men couldn’t find their finishing touch.With just over fifteen minutes remaining, Rafael Marquez was brought on to become the third player to feature in five World Cups, and played a vital role in ensuring Mexico held on for the win.The result means Germany have lost their opening game at a World Cup for the first time since 1982.South Korea and Sweden now lie in wait for the pair in Group F.Switzerland and Brazil shared the spoils after a thrilling encounter in Rostov.Brazil started brightly and were rewarded when Philippe Coutinho gave his side the lead as he curled the ball past Yann Sommer from the edge of the Swiss 18-yard box.Early in the second half, weak defending from Brazil allowed Switzerland to equalise.Swiss midfielder Steven Zuber rose above the Brazilian defenders to power his header past Brazil goalkeeper Allison.Six defenders were in the six-yard box when the ball arrived, but Zuber, the only Swiss player there, was given a free header.Minutes from the end, Brazil had a flurry of chances, Roberto Firmino came close with a headed effort of his own before defender Miranda saw his shot draw inches wide of the post.The Swiss rearguard repelled the late pressure to ensure they earned a draw.last_img