Germany join Croatia in second round after beating AustriaJune 17th, 2008 - 7:07 am ICT by IANS
Vienna, June 17 (DPA) German captain Michael Ballack scored with a spectacular free-kick in the 49th minute to give his side a 1-0 victory in a Euro 2008 Group B match played in Vienna and a place in the quarter-finals. Spanish referee Manuel Gonzalez sent German coach Joachim Loew and his Austrian counterpart Josef Hickersberger into the stands in the first half for arguing with the fourth official.
Germany needed just a draw to join Croatia in the second round, while the co-hosts needed to beat Germany and hope that Croatia would beat Poland in their final game.
But while the Croats, although they fielded a second-string side, managed to beat Poland 1-0 in Klagenfurt, an Austrian victory was never on the cards as Germany dominated proceedings.
The three-time champions were let down by poor finishing though and it took a spectacular effort from Ballack to decide the match.
Germany finish the group on six points, three behind Croatia, while Austria and Poland each have one point.
Germany will face Portugal in the quarter-finals, while Croatia take on Turkey. dpa adh
Tags: adh, captain michael, counterpart, croats, dpa, euro 2008, final game, free kick, german coach, joachim loew, manuel gonzalez, michael ballack, proceedings, quarter finals, referee, second string, six points, spectacular effort, time champions, vienna