It’s official: Germany will not make it to the knockout stage of the 2018 World Cup. The defending World Champions failed to make it out of group play for the first time ever, as Germany was unable to capitalize on Sweden’s 3-0 victory over Mexico. Needing a victory over South Korea to advance, the Germans were unable to take advantage of a number of chances, and in stoppage time, South Korea’s Kim Young-Gwon and Son Heung-Min scored goals to give them a 2-0 victory.
With the results of Wednesday’s matches, Sweden will (surprisingly) sit atop Group F, while Mexico will advance as the runners-up. South Korea and Germany will round out the group, but as the top-2 advance to the knockout round, both will head home.
Germany entered the tournament as one of the favorites to win the entire thing, as the defending world champions brought back a number of the players from their 2014 World Cup squad and added in a handful of young, talented players to theoretically offset any complacency that might have popped up. However, after losing to Mexico and needing a moment of magic from Toni Kroos to defeat Sweden, it was obvious that this German side was not on the same level as the one that won four years ago.