Jul 4, 2014, 12:52 PM EDT
After 45 minutes in sunny Rio de Janeiro the Germans have the lead as Mats Hummels 13th minute header is the difference.
France have looked dangerous in spells with Valbuena and Benzema having chances to equalize as the German defense looks far from watertight.
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An intriguing second half awaits, as Germany aim to become the first team in history to reach four-straight World Cup semifinals.
13′: Hummels heads home from Kroos’ free kick, as Varane is beaten easily in the air.
Other key moments:
7′: Valbuena pops up in the box and chips the ball delightfully towards Benzema but the French forward pulled his volley just wide.
12′: Hummels intercepts just as Benzema is about to slot the ball home from six-yards out.
24′: Klose goes down in the box under a challenge but the referee waves play on.
33′: Valbuena’s shot across goal is saved superbly by Neuer and Benzema’s follow up is deflected over from close range.
43′: A mazy run from Benzema worries the German defense but his shot is straight at Neuer.
Questions for the second half:
- Will Germany continue to play a high line?
Griezmann, Benzema and Valbuena have caused Germany plenty of problems with their movement up top and the German back line isn’t helping itself by pushing so high up the pitch. France have yet to take full advantage of the sloppy defending but it won’t be long until German comes unstuck if they keep this tactic up.
- When we will see Olivier Giroud?
The Arsneal striker tore Switzerland apart in the group stages but struggled against Nigeria in the last 16. His clinical finishing could well be a crucial factor if France are to advance. If
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