Germany eliminated at World Cup group stage

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Defending champions Germany have been eliminated from the 2018 FIFA World Cup at the group stage. Joachim Löw's side were beaten 2-0 by South Korea in their final group game in Kazan and dropped to the bottom of Group F. In the group's other match, Sweden beat Mexico 3-0 to leapfrog their opponents into top spot. 

"It's tough to put into words. We believed until the end but just couldn't find the back of the net. I think we had enough chances, we just didn't take them. That finished us today," said a disappointed Mats Hummels after the final whistle. "A really painful evening for us and all football fans."

In front of 42,873 spectators in Kazan, the world champions started with four Bayern players (captain Manuel Neuer, Hummels, Niklas Süle and Joshua Kimmich) and were the more active team. However, Germany struggled for long periods to create clear-cut chances against the hard-running Koreans. 

After a goalless first half and Sweden took a 2-0 lead, Löw brought on Mario Gomez followed by Thomas Müller and Julian Brandt to push for a goal. It was not enough though to break through the defensive ranks of the nation that finished fourth as hosts in 2002. Injury-time goals from Young-Gwon Kim after a video review and Heung-Son Min ensured an early exit for the world champions. 

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