Ton-up Low will not rest on laurels ahead of Mexico test

Cameroon forward Vincent Aboubakar scoring his country's consolation goal against world champions Germany. Joachim Low's side will face Mexico in the Confederations Cup semi-final on Thursday.
Cameroon forward Vincent Aboubakar scoring his country's consolation goal against world champions Germany. Joachim Low's side will face Mexico in the Confederations Cup semi-final on Thursday.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

SOCHI • Germany's manager Joachim Low said he is looking forward to facing Mexico on Thursday in the Confederations Cup semi-finals after the world champions pipped Chile to top spot in Group B.

The Germans play Mexico in Sochi for a place in Sunday's final in St Petersburg, while Chile meet Portugal in the other last-four clash tomorrow in Kazan.

"Mexico is going to be a tough game, they are a very flexible team with very good players," said Low, who became the first head coach to achieve 100 international wins. "We don't often play Central American sides so that will be interesting, but we need to be on our guard."

Timo Werner, 21, netted twice in the 3-1 win over 10-man Cameroon which saw them finish two points clear of Chile, who rallied for a 1-1 draw with Australia in Moscow.

After Kerem Demirbay opened the scoring, Werner struck either side of Vincent Aboubakar's consolation effort on 78 minutes.

But the match was marred by controversy when Cameroon had Ernest Mabouka sent off on 64 minutes for a poor tackle on Emre Can.

It began with a case of mistaken identity halfway through the second half - which video replays were meant to eradicate - and left the Cameroon players and coaching staff bemused and irritated.

Sebastien Siani was dismissed for a foul on Can after referee Wilmar Roldan inspected a pitch-side monitor. It then took furious protests from the Cameroon players, including Siani sarcastically applauding Roldan, for the Colombian to check the monitor again and discover he had sent off the wrong player.

Siani was called back and Mabouka was correctly sent off.

"It's a foul, fair enough, but both players had their legs high. I don't understand why only my player received a red card," said Cameroon coach Hugo Broos.

Low, who in his 150th match in charge of Germany, maintained his impressive record of reaching the semi-finals of every tournament over the last decade. He praised his inexperienced side for overcoming Cameroon, but Broos lashed out at tournament organisers in Russia with just a year to go before the country stages the World Cup.

"On three different occasions, we had to start our session an hour late because we were stuck in traffic," said Broos. "That must be sorted out because when the World Cup is here, teams should not be stuck in traffic."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, THE GUARDIAN

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 27, 2017, with the headline 'Ton-up Low will not rest on laurels ahead of Mexico test'. Print Edition | Subscribe