This isn't a joke! Defending champions and favorites for the tournament, Germany have been stunned and beaten fair and square by Mexico. The Germans were never in the game, not even for a minute.
Mexico were all over them. Not for a single second it seemed Germany were capable of scoring, or even threatening to score. Kudos to Mexican team for their energetic display.
They took the lead in the 36th minute, having dominated the match. Their No.22 Lozano was earmarked for success before the tournament, and he showed just why. He received the ball on the left side, beat his marker Kimmich, and slotted the ball into the net.
Despite trailing, Germany didn't seem to have the energy, or the passion to equalize. Their attacking quartlet of Ozil, Muller, Draxler and Werner were poor. Ozil and Muller were horrible particularly. If Germany are to retain their title, they will need to regroup soon. Joachim Low has a task on his hand!
FULL TIME: Germany 0-1 Mexico
90' + 2': An intricate passing move nearly results in a chance. Muller tries to poke through a pass beyond the Mexican defense, but Ochoa is quick of the line to grab the ball.
90': Boateng takes it upon himself, and unleashes a shot from 25 yards out. But Ochoa holds onto it. Three minutes added on!
89': Gomez tries a cheeky back flick, but Ochoa is up to the task. The ball then falls to Brandt, whose effort from outside the area is wide.
88': It's one thing to lose. But it will be humiliating if Germany lose, given the way they have played today. No passion, no energy!
86': Final change by Germany! Brandt comes in for Werner.
84': Another effort by Kroos from distance, but yet again, it's a comfortable save for Ochoa. And the very next moment, Hummels receives a yellow for a poor challenge on Alvarez.
83': Muller receives a yellow card! He has had a shocker of a day, and it just gets worse for him.
82': Germany are on the attack, but it's leaving space for the Mexico to counter. And they do so, as the ball reaches Layun on left. He tries an effort, but again it's wide.
79': Second change for Germany. Mario Gomez comes in for left back Plattenhardt.
78': Two corner in space of 30 seconds for Germany. But they can't do much from it. Instead, Mexico counter after the second corner, and Layun is one on one with the defender. Unable to beat him for pace, he takes an effort from 25 yards out, but it sails over Neuer's goal.
76': Effort from Kroos, but it's wide! The German midfielder receives the ball from the right side, and takes a first time effort on goal. But it doesn't trouble Ochoa.
73': History maker Rafael Marquez is coming on. He takes over the captaincy arm band from the departing Guardado.
71': Boateng breaks from the defense, and feeds Reus with a good pass. He tries to put the ball in the box, but the defender is in the way. The ball comes back to Reus, and he has a go. But it's way way over!
70': Mexico are asking for a penalty, but the referee is not interested! Chicharito is put clean through on goal, but as he is about to shoot, there is pressure from the defender, and he falls to ground pleading for a spot-kick.
68': The resulting corner in taken short, and Ozil puts the ball into the box. It beats everyone, and reaches Werner. But he blazes his effort over the bar.
67': Corner for Germany! A cross from the right reaches Draxler, but his shot is deflected out for a corner.
66': The goal scorer, and Mexico's hero Lozano is coming off for a standing ovation. No. 9 Jimenez coms on for him.
60': Change for Germany is imminent. Marco Reus is ready to come on. Will it be Ozil, or Muller? And here's the change. It's Khedira who is taken off. A very attacking change by Low.
58': First change for Mexico. The impressive Vela is taken off, and Alvarez comes in place of him.
57': What a chance for Mexico to double their lead! A long ball finds Chicharito, who has the support of Vela, and is against Hummels. The striker slides the ball to Vela, but his pass is just too strong.
55': Chance for Germany. The 2014 champions pass the ball from one side to another, and it reaches to Draxler. His effort takes a deflection, and goes out for a corner.
53': Frustrated Kimmich has an effort from 30 yards out with his left foot, but its way over. The Germans are being forced to these long rangers by a disciplined Mexico defense.
51': The boy on Mexico's left is sure to be the next big thing in world football. Lozano hasn't just scored a goal, but is also impressing with his maturity. His pace and dribbling has terrorized Kimmich.
48': First chance of the second half falls to Germany. Left back Plattenhardt has a go from 25 yards, but it straight in the hands of Ochoa.
WE ARE BACK UNDERWAY!
Oh boy! Is this going to be the giant killing performance of the World Cup 2018? Mexico lead Germany 1-0 at half time, and they thoroughly deserve it. In fact, they would have been 2 or 3 up, had it not been for their wastefulness in front of goal.
Germany coach Joachim Low has a lot to think. His attacking midfield trio of Muller, Draxler and Ozil have been shocking, A change might be in cards for the 2014 champions. Find out in 15 minutes!
HALF TIME: Germany 0-1 Mexico
45': Counter attack by Mexico again. Vela brings the ball from the defense to attack, and passes it. He receives it back from his teammate, and has an effort at the goal. It's not far! One minute added!
39': Moreno has been shown a yellow card for that challenge on Kimmich.
38': Free kick for Germany in a very dangerous position after Kimmich was knocked off. Kroos takes it, and it comes of the crossbar! Replays have shown it's a tremendous save by Ochoa, who got his fingertips to it.
36': GOAL! Mexico's pressure has paid off. Lozano, the youngster, is free out wide, and found out by his teammate. The No.22 takes a touch and beats Kimmich, and with his next touch, shoots the ball beyond Neuer. Germany 0-1 Mexico
34': Nearly a goal! Herrera again does brilliantly in the centre, and feeds the ball to Vela. The former Arsenal man plays a lovely through ball, but Layon just can't reach it.
30': Ozil, Draxler and Muller have been absolutely anonymous till now. The attacking trio of Germany haven't seen much of the ball to make any kind of impact.
28': Another effort by Layun, but again it is straight at Neuer. Germany are struggling here. Khedira loses the ball in his own box, and Lozano feeds to his opposite winger. But he can't do much.
26': Another chance for Mexico, and another failure. They counter from a German free kick, and find youngster Lozano free out wide. He drives towards the goal, but is crowded out. The No.22 passes the ball to Layun, but his effort is well over.
24': Mexico are fired up here! Moreno is called for a foul, and he has a few strong words to say towards the referee. The official calls him up, and asks to calm down. HOT STUFF!
22': Double chance for Germany. First it's Werner, who swivels inside the box, but his shot is straight at Ochoa. And a few seconds later, Kroos has an effort from his left foot, which is again easy for the keeper.
18': Poor from Chicharito! He was one on one with Neuer after being put through by Moreno. But the former Manchester United striker dwelled on the ball way too much, and allowed the German defense to recover.
15': Nearly an own goal! A good cross from right by Kimmich is not dealt by the Mexico defense. It reaches to the far post, where Salcedo is lucky to not put the ball in his own net. He didn't know much about it though!
14': Another chance for Mexico! The free kick is put in the box by Herrera, but the header from his teammate is straight at Neuer.
13': Toni Kroos is very very angry! He thinks he was barged from behind, but the referee gives the foul against him after he holds on to the ball. The midfielder confronts the referee, who has to calm him down.
10': Good save by Neuer! Herrera is given space by the Germans, and he tries a shot from 25 yards out. It's a good effort, but straight at the keeper.
9': Layun takes the resulting free kick, but its way way over. Not the best of the efforts from Mexico's No.7 .
8': And now, a free kick in a dangerous position for Mexico. Vela makes a great run, but is fouled by the German defense.
7': Chance! Germany get a corner, but they take it short. They passed the ball around, hoping to put a killer pass. But the ball deflects and reaches Hummels, whose weak shot is easily saved by Ochoa.
5': After the fast start, Germany have the possession, as they pass the ball around.
3': Now chance for Germany. Werner is put behind the Mexican defense with a good through ball. But the striker fails to hit the target.
2': Good delivery in the box by Layun, but no Mexican attacker gets a head to it.
1': Brilliant start by Mexico. They attack from the very first minute, and put the German defense in bother. Corner for them.
Germany fans, here is a sweet reminder of what World Cup means for your country!
Here are the starting XI of both the teams. Can Chicharito and Mexico spring an upset?
The Germany starting XI is here, and despite the controversy surrounding him, MESUT OZIL starts!
So, defending champions Germany take on Mexico in their first match of World Cup 2018. The Joachim Low-led side are one of the favorites coming into the tournament. Though, their squad has been hit with a minor controversy. The German fans are against the inclusion of Mesut Ozil and Ilkay Gundogan, following their decision to take a picture with Turkish President earlier in May. Will this controversy affect the morale of the squad? We'll find out soon!
So this is it! The World Cup is back after four long years. This edition is being played in Russia. The tournament commences on June 14, and will conclude on July 15. Hosts Russia will play the first match against Saudi Arabia.
Defending champions Germany are on of the favorites to retain their crown, though, they will face stiff competition from 2010 champions Spain, 1998 winners France and five-time champions Brazil. While these three teams are expected to win, the likes of Argentina, Portugal and England are the outsiders to take home the trophy.
While these are the teams expected to win the trophy, there are three 'black horses' for the tournament.
1. Belgium: There is a very strong reason to consider Belgium as favorites, but it's way too early for that. The team managed by Roberto Martinez has many outstanding players like Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, Thibaut Courtois and Kevin de Bruyne. The quality in their midfield is second to none. Yet, they are no Spain or Germany. The growth of Belgium has begun only in recent time, and its fair to say not many within the team would actually believe they go till the end. Though, it won't be wrong to say given the quality they have, a surprise is very possible.
2. Croatia: They are arguably in the Group of Death, yet, the Croatian team will feel extremely confident of passing the group stage comfortably. That is a very minimum which the team should dream of, given they have the likes of Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic, Ivan Perisic and Mario Mandzukic. The quality in their midfield is particulary good, and that might make them dream of winning the trophy. But in all honesty, that is improbable.
3. Uruguay: They were the dark horses back in 2010, they are the dark horses in 2018 as well. There is no denying the quality they possess. Well, not many teams can say they have two world class defenders in Diego Godin and Jose Gimenez, and two strikers in Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani. Yet, beyond these four players, there isn't much quality. The good thing for Uruguay though is the fact they can claim to have the easiest group, with Russia, Saudi Arabia and Egypt as their opponents. A qualification from group stages should be all but confirmed, and with the four world class players, you can put a cent on them doing the unthinkable.
A couple of teams have suffered off the field issues ahead of the extravaganza. Spain saw a change in their head coach, as Fernando Hierro took over from Julen Lopetegui, who was sacked on Wednesday following his decision to sign a contract with Real Madrid on Tuesday.
Germany also have been hit by an issue to couple of their players. Mesut Ozil and Ilkay Gundogan have been caught in controversy following their decision to take a picture with the Turkish President earlier this May.
It sparked outrage within their country, with a section of fans booing Gundogan and Ozil during Germany's friendlies against Austria and Saudi Arabia. Their manager, Joachim Low though, came out in their support, and criticized the fans for their reaction towards their players.