Match day 5 of the World Cup 2014 served up the much anticipated clash between Germany and Portugal with African teams Nigeria and Ghana taking to the field later in the night.
The Germans came into the tournament in fine form and are one of the favorites to lift the trophy therefore they had the grand opportunity to send a message to their rivals by beating Portugal. Portugal on the other hand had the world player of the year, Christiano Ronaldo, who had a point to prove in his never ending battle with Lionel Messi for football supremacy.
Portugal were the first to hit the break with Ronaldo forcing a fine save from Neuer but it was the Germans who would draw first blood after Gotze was fouled in the box. Thomas Muller stepped up to the penalty spot and didnâ€™t make any mistakes putting the ball into the back of the net.
It got worse for Portugal when Germany doubled their lead after Hummels headed in a corner. But that was not the end of their woes as Real Madridâ€™s Pepe was sent off after a moment of madness with him pushing his head to a sitting Muller.
With 10 men down the game was now firmly in Germanyâ€™s hands and they added a third after the Portuguese defense failed to clear the ball giving man of the match Muller a chance to score his second of the day.
The football gods must have stacked up against the Portuguese as they had Coentrao stretchered off before the break.
The second half was all about the German defense with Portugal being resolute in defense but that couldnâ€™t stop the in form Muller from grabbing his first career hat trick in 78th minute to put the result beyond doubt.
The second match of the day had African champions Nigeria take on Asian champions Iran. Both teams made it difficult for each other with both missing out on chances to score. This end to end game went on for the full 90 minutes with none of them grabbing the winner and we had our first scoreless and drawn game in this yearâ€™s world cup.
This draw will offer great incentive to Bosnia who lost to Argentina but still hope to make it into the round of 16. Nigeria will be kicking themselves for failing to register a win with their next game being against the Argentines.
The last game of the night had Ghana take on the United States of America.
The game got off to a fast start with USAâ€™s Clint Dempsey getting on the scoreboard in the first minute to register the fastest goal in this yearâ€™s world cup â€“ the fifth fastest goal in world cup history.
Altidore almost doubled the USA’s advantage in the 19th minute after Fabian Johnson’s low cross found the towering striker inside the six-yard box, but his attempt on goal was blocked. After that both teams blew their chances and the game went into the break with USA in the lead.
Boateng was introduced on the hour-mark and his substitution was an inspired one as the Africans started to dictate possession and tempo in search of an equaliser. The Ghanaians were eventually rewarded for their sustained pressure in the 82nd minute courtesy of some lovely link-up play between Gyan and Andre Ayew.
We might have thought we would have our second draw in the world cup but it was not to be â€“ to the heartbreak of Ghana fans â€“ with USA grabbing the winner four minutes later as defender Brooks rose highest to score.
The Americans will now hope they can make it out of one of the toughest groups in the tournament and now need a great result against the Germans or Portuguese.