Denmark goalkeeping great Peter Schmeichel says Mexico “fully deserved” their World Cup group stage victory over reigning champions Germany after Hirving Lozano’s goal gave them a memorable win in Moscow.
Lozano finished a flowing Mexican team move in the 35th minute to give Mexico the lead – which they protected despite strong German pressure in the final stages.
After the shock result, RT special guest host Schmeichel said the Germans had looked out of sorts – although Mexico had fully deserved the win.
“It was a really interesting game,” Schmeichel said. “The world champions have not turned up yet. Mexico were fantastic, they found a way to play against Germany. They played them really well, they read the weaknesses.”
Former Manchester United goalkeeper Schmeichel, who appeared at the World Cup with Denmark, said the Mexicans had got their tactics spot on against four-time World Cup winners Germany.
“Behind [Joshua] Kimmich the space was exploited… Lozano was exploiting the bad defence, the German defence was incredibly bad… Germany had a lot of the ball, but lacked imagination.”
Schmeichel was particularly critcal in his assessment of German midfielder Mesut Ozil’s performance.
“When they [Germany] lost it, the players like Ozil didn’t take part in the defending, Ozil was just static.
“Most Germans wanted [Ilkay] Gundogan playing.. I can’t understand why that substitution wasn’t made… Ozil was a massive problem today…”
Despite the intense German pressure in the closing stages, Schmeichel said Juan Carlos Osorio’s Mexican team had been good value for their win.
“Mexico deserved to win this, they defended really well… It was desperate defending in the last 20 minutes, but they stood up to it…. It was a fair result.”
While Schmeichel said Germany’s remaining Group F opponents Sweden and South Korea should be wary of a backlash in their games against the reigning champions, he also said Joachim Low’s team have serious defensive issues to resolve.
“Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels were all over the place,” he said. “The whole German team looked a bit off.”
For the thousands of Mexico fans crammed into the 80,000-seater Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow it was the perfect start to their World Cup.
The Mexican fans have helped turn the Russian capital into a carnival atmosphere in recent days, being a ubiquitous presence on the streets and at games involving other teams.
They have captured the hearts of locals and fans from elsewhere with their friendly and fun-loving approach to supporting their team.
They next face South Korea in Rostov-on-Don on Saturday, and Germany take on Sweden in Sochi on the same day in a must-win game.