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Germany eliminate South Africa

AGENCIES

PARIS

Germany had no trouble dispensing with South Africa in Montpellier, as the Banyana Banyana go home from their first World Cup without a point.

Leupolz was left unmarked to head in the opening goal from six yards out in the 14th minute at the Stade de la Mosson, and Sara Daebritz — who recently signed for Paris Saint-Germain — fired in the second.

Lina Magull missed a glorious chance to increase Germany’s advantage but they went 3-0 up with five minutes left in the first half. Giulia Gwinn crossed and captain Alexandra Popp emphatically headed home. Magull got the fourth goal from close range after the break, and South Africa then tried in vain to grab a consolation, with Janine van Wyk firing just over from long range and Thembi Kgatlana being denied by goalkeeper Almuth Schult after going clean through.

Germany finished on top of the group with the maximum nine points and with no goals conceded. They go into a last-16 tie on Saturday in Grenoble against an as yet unknown third-place finisher from another group.

Group A concludes later on Monday, with hosts France facing Nigeria in Rennes and Norway aiming to wrap up their place in the knockout phase as they meet South Korea in Reims.

Spain and China make last 16 after stalemate

Spain and China played to a scoreless draw Monday that advanced both squads to the round of 16. Spain finished second in Group B behind Germany.

Spain advanced to the knockout stage for the first time and will face the winner of Group F on Monday at Reims — likely the United States if the Americans win or draw in their final group match against Sweden.

China have advanced to the knockout stage at each of their seven World Cup appearances. They finished third in the group at 1-1-1. Spain also finished 1-1-1.

La Roja’s best chance came in the 39th minute but Peng Shimeng stopped Jennifer Hermoso’s header off a cross from Virginia Torrecilla. China’s goalkeeper also fended off Alexia Putellas’ free kick in the 71st. Peng got her fingertips on another shot from Hermoso in the 86th minute to deflect the ball over the net as Spain appeared to apply pressure in the waning minutes.

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