The players buried Jean-Paul Danneberg among themselves, national hockey coach André Henning hugged him warmly. The young German substitute goalkeeper secured his team’s first entry into a World Cup semi-final since 2010 with two saves in a penalty shoot-out.
“That’s awesome. We have always believed in ourselves and that is what sets us apart. Luckily I was able to save two, that was enough,” said the keeper of German champions Rot-Weiss Köln after the 4-3 penalty shoot-out against England on Wednesday.
The DHB selection will meet three-time world champion Australia in the round of the last four teams in India on Friday (12 p.m. / DAZN). “I’m so proud of the team and fortunately we have a goalkeeper like Jean-Paul,” said Germany captain Mats Grambusch.
It was Grambusch who had led his already written-off team to an unbelievable race to catch up. “No one believed in us anymore. The boys stayed cool and calm and played their best hockey under pressure. What a great mentality,” said the national coach.
the German men were last in the semi-finals of a World Cup
Four minutes before the end of the game, the German team was almost out of the tournament after trailing 2-0 to the defensively strong English team, especially as Christopher Ruhr shot a seven-meter shot into the crossbar and thus missed the goal. Then came the grand entrance of the Grambusch brothers.
First Captain Mats scored to make it 1:2 (57th minute) and thus inflicted the English team’s first goal of the tournament. Then his brother Tom kept his nerve and a minute later converted a seven-metre throw to make it 2-2. In this phase, Henning had taken his goalkeeper off the field in favor of another field player.
And the national coach also had the right instinct to nominate Danneberg for the penalty shoot-out. Niklas Wellen, Hannes Müller, Thies Prinz and Rühr converted their attempts, the 21-year-old German keeper mastered the last and decisive one from England’s Liam Ansell and thus gave his team the leap into the next round.
“We said we want to be a tournament team,” said national coach Henning. “I imagine it like this.”