Euro 2024

Euro 2024: Germany book last-16 spot with victory over Hungary

Germany became the first nation to advance to the Euro 2024 last 16 as goals from Jamal Musiala and Ilkay Gundogan clinched a 2-0 victory over Hungary in Group A.

After a dominant performance against Scotland, Germany faced a tougher challenge against Hungary, a team they had beaten only once in their last six home encounters.

Despite a nervy start with Manuel Neuer denying Roland Sallai early on, Germany quickly found their rhythm. Kai Havertz and Robert Andrich came close before Musiala opened the scoring.

The goal was a result of a scrappy play where Willi Orban lost balance, allowing Gundogan to set up Musiala for a close-range finish.

Hungary thought they had equalized when Sallai converted a rebound from a free-kick, but the goal was ruled out for offside.

Barnabas Varga missed Hungary’s best chance, heading over the bar from close range. These missed opportunities proved costly as Germany maintained their lead.

READ MORE: Klaus Gjasula’s late equaliser secures draw for Albania against Croatia in Euro 2024 Group B thriller

Germany doubled their lead in the second half. Gundogan capitalized on a low cross from Maximilian Mittelstadt, calmly slotting the ball past Peter Gulacsi. This goal secured Germany’s spot in the next round with a game to spare.

Gundogan’s performance was a reminder of his immense quality. Now playing as a No. 10 under Julian Nagelsmann, Gundogan showcased his ability to both create and score goals. He played a crucial role in Musiala’s opener and found the space to seal the win with his own goal.

With their second win in the group stage, Germany leads Group A and will look to maintain their momentum in the final group match.

Historically, Germany have performed well after winning their opening matches in the Euros, having gone on to win the tournament on three previous occasions.

As the tournament progresses, Gundogan and Musiala will be key to Germany’s hopes of lifting the Euro 2024 trophy.

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