The Germany U21 national team got off to a flying start in the group stage of the European Under-21 Championship, beating hosts Hungary 3-0. Stefan Kuntz's side initially struggled to turn their dominance into goals, but three strikes in twelve minutes settled the match midway through the second half. Lukas Nmecha (61’) and Ridle Baku (66', 71') were the goalscorers.
Germany assumed control early on, while Hungary sought to create chances on the break. Niklas Dorsch’s low shot into the side netting (12') provided the first glance at goal, but chances were few and far between early on.
The German youngsters enjoyed nearly 80% possession during the opening 20 minutes. Hungary nearly handed the guests the lead, with Botond Balogh almost bamboozling his own ‘keeper Balasz Bese (21’) with a back-pass. David Raum went close from distance (25’) but in general the final pass was missing which would have allowed Germany to put the Hungarian goal under real pressure.
The second half picked up where the first left off, with Germany controlling the game and looking to show more energy going forwards. Jonathan Burkardt saw his effort blocked at the last second (48‘). Germany launched attack after attack, but things often ground to a halt on the edge of the box or were hindered by an inaccurate cross at the end.
All that changed after the hour mark. Mergim Berisha picked out Baku on the right, who teed up Nmecha perfectly in the box to head Germany into the lead. While Kuntz’s men were bolstered by the opening strike, the Hungarian defence soon crumbled.
Just minutes later, a parried Arne Maier strike was re-delivered into the box where Baku was waiting to double the lead (66'). But two wasn’t enough. Berisha was inches away from adding his to scoresheet, denied only by the crossbar. The Salzburg forward rattled the woodwork again a minute later, but this time Baku turned home the rebound for his second of the day (72’).
In the end, a commanding win that sees Germany top the group after one game, with the other fixture in group A between Romania and Netherlands ending 1-1.
The DFB U21s are in action again on Saturday (21:00 CET) for their second group match against the Netherlands.