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    Germany eliminated from World Cup despite 4-2 victory over Costa Rica

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    Germany, a four-time World Cup champion, was eliminated in the group stage Thursday when Group E finished with a chaotic pair of games.

    The Germans beat Costa Rica, 4-2, but Japan’s 2-1 win over Spain meant Japan and Spain were through.

    Germany has now failed to reach the knockout stage for the second consecutive World Cup.

    Germany needed Spain to draw with Japan to avoid a second straight group stage exit.

    As four-time winners of the FIFA World Cup, Germany always carry pedigree and prestige at any tournament. As 2014 champions, they have recent World Cup success as well.

    So it was a shock when they were eliminated from the 2022 World Cup in the group stage, sending shockwaves throughout the tournament.

    In fact, it felt cataclysmic for a moment as for a short time through the final Group E matchday, both Germany and Spain were sitting out of a qualification position, but Germany’s comeback to beat Costa Rica 4-2 at least saved the Spaniards, who back into the knockout stage despite their 2-1 loss to Japan.

    Yet Germany did not have such luck. Their opening match defeat against Japan came back to haunt them, as Japan’s victory over Spain in the finale sent them through atop the group, and Spain finished second on goal differential, largely thanks to their massive 7-0 opening victory over Costa Rica.

    Before the 2018 World Cup, Germany had never been eliminated from the group stage of a modern FIFA World Cup in its current format.

    Then, in 2018 at the Russia tournament, they were knocked out in stunning fashion, finishing last behind Sweden, Mexico, and South Korea. They fell in the opener 1-0 against Mexico, before recovering to beat Sweden 2-1 in the second match. However, they flopped in the group finale, falling 2-0 to South Korea on a pair of stoppage-time goals. Germany would have gone out with a draw anyway, and had thrown numbers forward in hopes of finding a winner.

    The only time they had previously gone out in similar fashion was in 1978 when they were eliminated from the second group stage. In that tournament, West Germany finished second in their first group, behind Poland but ahead of Tunisia and Mexico. That saw them advance to the second group stage, where they finished third behind the Netherlands and Italy. In the second group stage that year, first place earned a spot in the final, while second place earned advancement to the third-place match.

    Otherwise, Germany had been knocked out in single-elimination competition at every other World Cup tournament.

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