News Live Scores

North Macedonia v Germany Live Commentary, 12/10/21

FT
0 - 4
MKD
GER
K. Havertz (50)
T. Werner (70)
T. Werner (73)
J. Musiala (83)
Toše Proeski Arena

Commentary

That's all from Skopje today, so thank you for joining us and goodbye!
A gritty first-half performance will offer little solace for North Macedonia in the final analysis, as they must now battle it out with closest rivals Romania and Armenia for a playoff place next month.
Following a crushing second-half display by Germany, it must be remembered that it took until the 70th minute for Werner's first goal - and his team's second - to effectively decide the outcome of this Group J clash. Their laboured showing before the interval was replaced by a more clinical edge after it though, helping the 2014 world champions secure their place at Qatar 2022 with two games to spare.
90' + 2' FULL-TIME: NORTH MACEDONIA 0-4 GERMANY
90' Germany have managed to hit double figures in terms of shots on target during the 90 minutes, with 10 so far from 24 attempts in total. By contrast, North Macedonia had just one solitary strike on target today.
88' Oh dear! The masked Churlinov has a rare opportunity to step clear of the German defence, but snatches hurriedly at his shot from 15 yards out and sends it spinning wildly past Neuer's left-hand post and into the stands.
85' Raum continues to evade a yellow card, as only a free-kick is awarded to North Macedonia for his foul on Askovski on the right wing.
K. Adeyemi
Assist
Germany
83' Adeyemi coolly played in Musiala - potentially a future Bayern teammate if rumours are to be believed - to slot home a deserved fourth goal for Germany.
J. Musiala
Goal
Germany
83' THAT'S FOUR! Musiala nets Germany's fourth in Skopje, as he combines with fellow youngster Adeyemi to fire into the net from the edge of the area, under little pressure from the home side's ailing back four. Their revenge is complete! 4-0 to Germany.
81' If anything, Germany look more potent since the changes, with the fresh legs of their young guns pulling apart their hosts' previously tight defensive line.
F. Neuhaus
T. Müller
Germany
79' The latest in a long line of substitutions sees Muller brought off for the final 10 minutes, having affected the match with some telling contributions, and Neuhaus is his replacement.
S. Aškovski
S. Ristovski
North Macedonia
77' With the game beyond his side, North Macedonia skipper Ristovski is replaced by Askovski.
K. Ristevski
T. Kostadinov
North Macedonia
77' Kostadinov is taken off in midfield, allowing Ristevski to come on.
J. Musiala
T. Werner
Germany
74' Having rattled off a quickfire double to decide the match, Werner comes off for Musiala.
J. Hofmann
S. Gnabry
Germany
74' Gnabry has endured a difficult night in far from ideal conditions, so now is withdrawn for Hofmann.
T. Werner
Goal
Germany
73' GAME OVER! With his brittle confidence now up, Werner makes the most of some tired legs to find space inside the area, on the left, and slot his effort into the opposite corner - not far from where his first goal nestled just minutes ago. North Macedonia 0-3 Germany!
F. Wirtz
Assist
Germany
73' Wirtz soon made an impact upon his arrival from the bench, feeding the ball to Werner to complete his brace and settle the match.
T. Werner
Goal
Germany
70' GERMANY DOUBLE THEIR ADVANTAGE! Werner makes amends for his earlier profligacy by banging a bouncing ball into the bottom corner from the edge of the area. It was such an inviting pass from Muller that the Chelsea striker could hardly refuse! That is surely game over for the North Macedonians, as Germany now lead 2-0.
S. Ristovski
Yellow Card
North Macedonia
70' Ristovski receives a booking in the aftermath of the Germany goal, apparently for his comments towards the referee.
T. Müller
Assist
Germany
70' Finishing a quick move, Muller laid on an excellent pass for Werner to fire home the second.
67' With the ball coming at an awkward angle behind him, Werner gets a volleyed attempt all wrong, and another German attack fizzles out.
65' As the new Bundestrainer since being formally appointed in the summer, Flick has enjoyed a perfect start to his time in charge of the Nationalelf, with victories in each of his first four games and just one goal conceded. That record looks set to be prolonged today.
63' Gnabry is just flagged offside after a typically cute pass from Muller on the right side of the area. It seems merely a matter of time before Germany have their decisive second goal.
K. Adeyemi
K. Havertz
Germany
61' Scorer of the only goal so far, Havertz is now rested and Adeyemi is offered an opportunity to impress.
F. Wirtz
L. Goretzka
Germany
61' Flick makes the anticipated change in midfield, as Goretzka comes off for Wirtz.
60' A LUCKY ESCAPE! Dimitrievski sees the ball drop just wide of his right-hand post, after first Havertz then Muller have attempts blocked, with the latter's taking a wicked deflection and almost spinning past the North Macedonian goalkeeper and into the net.
E. Rakip
B. Nikolov
North Macedonia
58' Rakip will be the next North Macedonia substitute to emerge from the bench, coming on for Nikolov for the final half-hour.
B. Miovski
A. Jahović
North Macedonia
58' After a workmanlike performance, Jahovic is replaced by Miovski up front.
56' The North Macedonian faithful are becoming increasingly frustrated at the decisions in this match, whistling and howling their disapproval at every opportunity. Their team are still in it, but Germany are entirely dominant now.
K. Havertz
Yellow Card
Germany
54' Havertz is penalised for clipping Churlinov as he turned away from the Chelsea forward, receiving a yellow card from the referee.
52' Muller wastes a free-kick from 25 yards out, striking his shot into the wall and - after a short period of penalty area pinball - North Macedonia get the ball clear.
T. Müller
Assist
Germany
50' Having created the opportunity with a block, Muller took Gnabry's throughball, surged through a retreating defence and fed Havertz to slot home.
K. Havertz
Goal
Germany
50' GERMANY LEAD! The away side are ahead at last, after Muller charges down a clearance, which breaks to Gnabry, whose weighted pass is cleverly diverted by his Bayern colleague into the path of Havertz. The Chelsea man gratefully applies the finishing touch, and it is now 1-0 to Germany!
48' Despite their position on the back foot throughout much of the match so far, North Macedonia have won 28 duels to Germany's 21.
46' We are back under way in soggy Skopje!
Many Mannschaft followers had been calling for Flick to introduce his talented teenagers - Wirtz and Musiala - for this fixture, allowing the next generation to have their chance. Perhaps it won't be long before we see the pair brought in to an off-colour front four, while the home side have already made one enforced change and are more likely to stick than twist while the game remains level.
Enjoying absolute dominance of the ball and of territory, Germany have lacked a little assurance in the final third - unusual for a team which has netted 19 times already in Group J. That elusive finishing touch and some resilient North Macedonian defending has contributed to the goalless scoreline at the break, leaving the possibility of a double defeat against their springtime conquerors still on the table in the second 45.
45' + 3' HALF-TIME: NORTH MACEDONIA 0-0 GERMANY
45' + 1' ALMOST! After wriggling free in the packed area, Werner prods a shot against the left post, leaving Dimitrievski beaten, but the ball trundles away to safety. A frustrating half for the Nationalelf is ending with something of a flurry!
44' Raum makes good progress up the left flank again, but his attempt at a cross bounces back against his shins and out for a North Macedonian goal kick.
42' On a soggy pitch, this match is becoming ever more pedestrian, and Germany look to be going through the motions as we approach the half-time whistle.
40' Another German attack falters, with the front three sharing accusatory looks after Gnabry fails to find Werner or Muller with a throughball.
38' Muller battles well for the ball near the right corner flag, in his customary style, but his forward colleagues are not so attentive in their pressing, and eventually North Macedonia clear.
36' Raum receives a final warning from the referee after his second aggressive tackle of the game misses the target, conceding a free-kick on the halfway line.
34' A long, angled ball finds Gnabry on the right side of the area, though the Bayern winger cannot get enough purchase on his header, which drops straight into the goalkeeper's gloves.
32' Werner has an attempt on the turn from just inside the box, but finds Dimitrievski well positioned to keep out his relatively tame strike.
31' As an indication of Germany's supremacy so far, they have racked up five corners, seven shots and have had 80 per cent of possession in the opening half-hour. However, they certainly look vulnerable to the counter.
S. Spirovski
A. Ademi
North Macedonia
29' Bowing to the inevitable, the injured Ademi is replaced by Spirovski for North Macedonia.
28' Despite a brief return to the fray, Ademi has gone down again and looks like he cannot continue in the home side's midfield.
26' Having made good progress into the right side of the area, Elmas can only mishit a low attempt at the German goal, which Neuer claims without too much concern. Nevertheless, a promising contribution for the Napoli midfielder.
24' Dimitrievski gets down to repel a bobbling effort from Gnabry, which is sent in from around 25 yards out, more in hope than expectation of breaking the deadlock.
23' Ademi is helped to the sideline, with Germany lining up a free-kick for his foul on Havertz.
21' The action is paused for a moment, after Havertz unintentionally makes clumsy contact with Ademi, who requires medical attention deep inside his own half.
19' Already heavily involved in events today, Dimitrievski is kindly awarded a free-kick after an apparent foul on the goalkeeper causes him to flap at Kimmich's corner.
18' Macedonia concede a second corner in quick succession, as their visitors start to apply more concerted pressure.
16' Gnabry almost finds an opening goal, as his cross is heavily deflected above Dimitrievski, who has to scramble back rapidly and tip the ball over via the crossbar. That would have been a freak goal had it dropped in!
14' From the corner, Velkovski heads off target from just inside the area.
13' A brief period of panic following a Kimmich corner ends up building into a rapid counter-attack for North Macedonia, which earns them a corner of their own.
11' Somehow, Havertz retrieves an errant ball and clips a cross back for Muller 10 yards out, but the Bayern Munich man can only glance his header wide of the goal with Dimitrievski left stranded.
9' With a difficult chance from just outside the box, on the turn, Nikolov scuffs the hosts' first significant effort wide of Neuer's left-hand post.
8' Twice, misplaced passes in the final third cut short promising German moves, allowing North Macedonia to break downfield and gain some rare territorial advantage.
6' Ristovski goes down under a heavy challenge near the centre circle, with the home fans howling for more than a free-kick to their side. The referee remains unmoved, though.
4' Sule's right-footed shot from the centre of the area flies over the bar, following a Kimmich cross.
2' Dimitrievski gathers a ball seemingly destined for Werner, as Germany make the early running. Then, from the first cross of the match, Kimmich has a back-post header punched off the line! Almost an opener for the away side.
1' Werner kicks off, and we are under way at Tose Proeski National Arena!
Both sets of players have observed the national anthems and are readying themselves for kick-off, which is just moments away!
While Germany can secure their spot in next year's World Cup if they win this match and Armenia fail to beat Romania, their hosts need points to stay in contention for the playoff place for finishing runner-up in Group J.
Germany have captain and goalkeeper Neuer back between the posts today, after Ter Stegen deputised against Romania last Friday, while Chelsea's Antonio Rudiger failed a late fitness test, so is replaced by Kehrer at centre-back. In attack, Muller comes in for fellow veteran Reus, who must settle for a place on the bench. The hosts, meanwhile, continue in the post-Pandev era with Jahovic featuring up front and March matchwinner Elmas among those in support of him from midfield.
SUBS: Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Bernd Leno, Florian Wirtz, Jamal Musiala, Florian Neuhaus, Karim Adeyemi, Jonas Hofmann, Matthias Ginter, Leroy Sane, Nico Schlotterbeck, Marco Reus.
GERMANY (4-2-3-1): Manuel Neuer; Lukas Klostermann, Niklas Sule, Thilo Kehrer, David Raum; Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka; Thomas Muller, Serge Gnabry, Kai Havertz, Timo Werner.
SUBS: Dejan Iliev, Damjan Siskovski, Todor Todoroski, Gjoko Zajkov, Nikola Serafimov, Aleksandar Trajkovski, Jani Atanasov, Kire Ristevski, Stefan Spirovski, Stefan Askovski, Erdal Rakip, Bojan Miovski.
NORTH MACEDONIA (4-3-2-1): Stole Dimitrievski; Ezgjan Alioski, Darko Velkoski, Visar Musliu, Stefan Ristovski; Tihomir Kostadinov, Arijan Ademi, Boban Nikolov; Eljif Elmas, Darko Churlinov; Adis Jahovic.
In March, Die Nationalelf - then under former manager Joachim Low - were beaten 2-1 in Duisburg by an industrious North Macedonia side. Genoa striker Goran Pandev - now retired from international football - put the underdogs in front just before half-time and, after Ilkay Gundogan later levelled from the penalty spot, Eljif Elmas netted a historic winner in the 85th minute.
This is just the second time these nations have met, and table-topping Germany are in search of revenge for their humbling defeat on home soil earlier this year, which foretold a fairly dismal display at Euro 2020. They have certainly bounced back under new coach Hansi Flick, though, and are cruising towards Qatar having won every qualifier since.
Hello and welcome to live coverage of the World Cup Qualifying Group J fixture between North Macedonia and Germany in Skopje.