Germany took a big step towards EURO 2020 qualification thanks to a hard-fought 3-0 win against Estonia on Sunday evening (13.10). Second-half goals from Ilkay Gündogan (52, 57) and Timo Werner (71’) secured victory for Die Mannschaft, who played with ten men for nearly 80 minutes after an early Emre Can red card.
Joachim Löw was forced to leave out in-form Serge Gnabry, who picked up a slight muscular injury in the friendly against Argentina. A further setback followed when Löw’s men were reduced to ten men after just 14 minutes when Emre Can was shown a straight red for a rash challenge on the edge of the box.
Estonia were unable to test Neuer’s goal from the resulting free kick, but the hosts were clearly boosted by the early dismissal and sought to take advantage with some bold play in the Germany half. Composure soon recovered as Kimmich dropped into central defence alongside Niklas Süle.
At the other end, Luca Waldschmidt tested Estonia goalkeeper Lepmets with a low effort from the edge of the box shortly afterwards, but the best effort for Die Mannschaft came from Marco Reus five minutes before the break. The BVB captain whipped a free kick over the wall from the left, but the ball dipped onto the post before being cleared from danger.
Whatever Löw said to the boys at half time made an impact. Just seven minutes into the half, Ilkay Gündogan fired Germany in front thanks to a slight deflection off Reus. If that wasn’t enough good fortune, a second deflected goal soon followed for the Manchester City midfielder to double the lead (57’). The strike was later ruled by UEFA as an own goal.
Any lingering hopes of an Estonia comeback were put to bed when Timo Werner – introduced in place of Luca Waldschmidt just five minutes earlier – cut inside after a long ball from Gündogan and finished clinically into the bottom corner (71’).
In the end, a routine victory that sees Germany move level with Netherlands on 15 points atop Group C, though the Dutch remain top due to a better head-to-head record.