Australia torn apart by Germany in World Cup opener

16:15, June 14, 2010      

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Australia's National Football Team, or Socceroos, have made a nightmare start to their World Cup finals campaign, with midfield star Tim Cahill sent off in Australia's embarrassing 4-0 loss to a classy Germany at Durban Stadium, Australia's media reported on Monday.

Australia has played its opening FIFA World Cup campaign in its Group D against Germany on late Sunday at the Durban Stadium.

"A German team on the way up at times humiliated an Australian team on the way down. Two goals up after 25 minutes, and in cruise control," the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) said on Monday.

"More like a training game than a World Cup game. Too much pace, too much mobility, too big, too strong, too skillful. Too damn good," it said.

Australia were mercilessly carved up by the Germans, whose young midfield playmaker Mesut Ozil put on a masterclass as his side produced the best football of the tournament so far.

The Germans had the match parceled up by halftime with goals to Lukas Podolski and Miroslav Klose.

Then any slim hopes of an Australian revival disappeared in the 57th minute when Cahill was marched for his challenge on German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger.

Goals to Thomas Muller and Cacau in the space of two second half minutes then followed to finish off Australia for the biggest defeat they have suffered in coach Pim Verbeek's reign, and they now need a miracle to qualify for the second stage of the tournament, Australian Associated Press wrote.

Verbeek admitted his side was outclassed by Germany and would have to win their next match against Ghana on June 19 in Rustenberg to have any chance to advancing to the second stage.

Germany now sit top of Group D, with Ghana, who beat Serbia 1-0 in Pretoria earlier on Sunday, also on three points.

Australia is bottom of the table on goal difference.

"It was not an easy game for us. Germany was better," Verbeek said.

"We all knew they were a candidate for this World Cup because they have a fantastic team. We have to learn from this game, and we have six days to recover physically and mentally."

The SMH regarded the game was "complete, utter disaster for Verbeek and the Socceroos."

Cahill, the hero of Australia's 2006 World Cup campaign, has been sent off with a straight red card in the 56th minute for a late challenge on Schweinsteiger at Moses Mabhida Stadium.

Special Report: World Cup 2010


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