Germany made it nine wins out of nine in Euro 2012 qualifying with a victory in
Turkey which jeopardises their opponents' hope of joining them in Poland and
Ukraine next summer.
Mario Gomez and Thomas Muller put Joachim Low's side 2-0 up before Hakan Balta
gave Turkey hope by pulling a goal back with 10 minutes remaining.
However, a Bastian Schweinsteiger penalty in the 86th minute sealed Germany's
ninth victory in Group A and saw Turkey drop to third place behind Belgium, who
Turkey will now be supporting Germany when they host the Belgians in Dusseldorf
on Tuesday night, needing Low's team to at least get a draw to leave them a
chance of finishing second with a win over Azerbaijan.
Manuel Neuer, who has just set a new club record for being unbeaten for Bayern
Munich in the Bundesliga, was in excellent form for Germany too with a number of
The first of those saves came in the fifth minute when he denied former Bayern
man Hamit Altintop with an excellent instinctive save in a one-on-one
At the other end, Germany did not look their usual selves going forward, with
chances few and far between as the visitors seemed to take it easy early on.
They changed that attitude in the 35th minute, though, when another of Bayern's
in-form players, Gomez, put then in front.
After making a save at the back, Neuer launched a quick counter-attack with a
throw into the path of club-mate Muller, who in turn played the ball through for
Gomez, who exuded confidence in the way he finished past Volkan Demirel having
seen off the attentions of Servet Cetin.
Germany continued to wait for chances on the counter-attack and another quick
clearance by Neuer set up Muller, but this time he shot over the crossbar.
Muller made it two in the 66th minute with Neuer again involved with a long
This time it was Mario Gotze who played the link-up man between the Germany
goalkeeper and the forward as he played an inch-perfect pass into the path of
Muller, who left Demirel no chance with a powerful shot.
The hosts, likely aware that Belgium had built a convincing lead against
Kazakhstan, responded and found a way back into the game when Balta scored in
the 79th minute.
Gokhan Gonul crossed from the right wing and Balta was left all alone to shoot
The provider of Turkey's goal then turned the villain as he fouled Muller in
the penalty area and Schweinsteiger stepped up to send Demirel the wrong way and
restore Germany's two-goal advantage in the 86th minute.