Germany loses against Finland 3:4

Ein the last pass, a last shot, but Dominik Kahun’s also missed. The same images could be seen on Saturday evening as the day before: while the opponents sang their anthem at the top of their voices afterwards, the players of the German national team stood on the ice with blank eyes. After the 0:1 against Sweden at the start of the 86th Ice Hockey World Championship, this time there was a 3:4 against Finland. “Losing twice like that within 24 hours is very, very bitter,” said striker Marcel Noebels afterwards at Sport1.

Of course, nobody had to be ashamed of it. For many observers, Finland is the most exciting ice hockey nation in the world. Although it has a population of just 5.5 million, every year it produces new top talent who win medal after medal at World Youth Championships. And when they get to the adults afterwards, they just keep going: the Finns recently reached four major finals in a row and are defending champions at both the World Cup and the Olympics.

Finland and the catenaccio on the ice

This is not the only reason why they are now favorites in their home country. This is also due to their system, which is almost impossible to crack in crucial games. It’s not really exciting though, more like a kind of catenaccio on the ice. At least when the Finns lead. For the German team it was therefore clear for this Saturday evening: Just don’t fall behind early. But in the tenth minute, Joel Armia made it 1-0. However, that didn’t seem entirely untenable, which could also be seen in the reaction of goalkeeper Dustin Strahlmeier, who was preferred to Mathias Niederberger.

Close duel to the end: Germany with Fabio Wagner (right) against Finland and Kaapo Kakko

Close duel to the end: Germany with Fabio Wagner (right) against Finland and Kaapo Kakko

Image: dpa

Even then, after conceding a goal, Strahlmeier could be seen again struggling. But the most important news: The German team also scored goals. On Friday against Sweden, everyone who missed the goalscorers in national coach Harold Kreis’s team felt vindicated. Now against Finland then finally the first goal, in the first third Marcel Noebels scored to equalize. “It’s important for the heads,” said captain Moritz Müller during the break at Magentasport, “we wanted to show that we can score goals.”

The Germans did the same afterwards. Kai Wissmann even gave them the lead in the 33rd minute. And if Nico Sturm had made it 3-1 afterwards, who knows how the game would have gone. Sturm hit the post before Sakari Manninen turned the game around with two quick goals. But before the end of the third, JJ Peterka scored to make it 3:3.

So it went like against Sweden with a draw in the last third. And again the German team went away empty-handed. Although Captain Müller had the lead on the bat again, he hit the crossbar. Mikko Lehtonen did better, scoring just under seven minutes before the end to make it 4:3 for the hosts. It stayed that way. And the Germans realized that they had kept up against the second top team, but again it wasn’t enough. It continues on Monday (4:20 p.m.) against the Americans. Another top team.

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