Kevin De Bruyne remains otherworldly! Man City midfielder leads Belgium past Germany while Leon Goretzka's injury will give Thomas Tuchel trouble
- Carrasco & Lukaku gave Belgium early lead
- Fullkrug & Gnabry with consolations for Germany
- De Bruyne the difference
TELL ME MORE: Questions were raised about Germany defensively against Peru and their openness was duly exploited by Domenico Tedesco's side on Tuesday. Kevin De Bruyne in particular was in a clinical mood, finding Yannick Carrasco in acres of space for Belgium's first before sliding through Romelu Lukaku for his fourth goal in two matches, all within the space of nine minutes. Germany looked nervous in front of the Cologne crowd and Dodi Lukebakio should have sealed the victory early on, having run the length of the pitch only to shoot narrowly wide.
Despite Hansi Flick's side being handed a lifeline through Niclas Fullkrug's penalty just before half-time, Germany were unable to make the most of a largely dominant second period. Leandro Trossard came on to great effect having, once again, found himself in plenty of space on the counter-attack, as he hooked a pass back for De Bruyne to finish expertly and put the match to bed. Serge Gnabry was able to grab a late consolation which made for a nervy finish, but the match ended 3-2 to give Belgium their first win over Germany in 17 attempts.
THE MVP: That was a captain's performance from De Bruyne. Germany seemed almost inexplicably exposed at times, but it still needed a master touch to thread the right ball through. Both passes to Carrasco and Lukaku were expertly timed and perfectly weighted, and the Belgium skipper was even on hand to provide a few vital defensive interceptions when his team were up against it. The fine finish on the end of Trossard's pass epitomised De Bruyne's complete display, and it was the ending his stellar performance deserved on the night. How Pep Guardiola will be looking forward to having him back for the business end of the season.
THE BIG LOSER: Despite the clear warning signs against Peru, it is evident that a lot of work still needs to be done by Flick to fix his side's defensive frailties. But the big loser from Tuesday night falls to another manager, as Leon Goretzka's injury means Thomas Tuchel may now be without his key midfielder for a crucial first game against Dortmund on Saturday. The Bayern star had to be hooked after just 30 minutes with what looked to be an ankle injury, as Tuchel is left sweating on his availability ahead of key fixtures in the league, as well as in Europe against Manchester City.
MATCH IN THREE PHOTOS:
WHAT NEXT? After a pulsating victory in Tuesday's friendly match, attention now turns to club football, where Goretzka's injury could prove to be a significant loss for Tuchel's title-chasing Bayern.
MATCH RATING (OUT OF FIVE): ⭐⭐⭐⭐