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Whirlwind Wirtz puts Germany in Euro Under-21’s final


Paris (AFP) – Germany joined Portugal in the final of the Under-21’s European Championship when beating the Netherlands 2-1 featuring the fastest goal in the tournament’s history on Thursday.

Germany got off the mark straight from the kick off, a 14-pass move finished off by Florian Wirtz in 29sec before the stunned Netherlands had even touched the ball.

The second goal on eight minutes was almost as slick as Ridle Baku provided a through ball and Wirtz bamboozled the defence and ‘keeper with his shimmy and shot.

The Dutch galvanised then to steady the flood and eventually pulled a goal back on 67 minutes when defender Perr Schuurs latched on to a loose ball at the back of the box, finishing with a deft clip beneath the ‘keeper Finn Dahmen.

Earlier in the other semi-final Portugal beat Spain 1-0 having survived a flurry of shots and taking a late lead through an own goal.

Spain swarmed all over Portugal for much of the game but failed to bury any of the multiple chances.

The decisive goal came when Spain defender Jorge Cuenca deflected a shot from Portugal’s Fábio Vieira on 80 minutes that left ‘keeper Alvaro Fernandez no chance.

bur/dmc/nr

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