Neither of the two favorites to win the World Cup — Germany and Brazil — was able to pull out a win in their opening matches Sunday in Russia, shaking up the field and shaking Mexico City enough to register as a seismic event.
Mexico stunned defending champion Germany, 1-0, early Sunday. The first-half goal by Hirving “Chucky” Lozano set off thunderous celebrations across Mexico, so much so that the government’s seismic monitoring network reported “artificially”-caused seismic activity, “possibly due to mass jumping.”
El #sismo detectado en la Ciudad de México se originó de manera artificial. Posiblemente por saltos masivos durante el Gol de la selección de #México en el mundial. Por lo menos dos sensores dentro de la Ciudad lo detectaron a las 11:32. pic.twitter.com/mACKesab3b
— SIMMSA (@SIMMSAmex) June 17, 2018
Germany is now on the brink of elimination, with upcoming matches against Sweden and South Korea becoming must-wins. In recent years, three defending World Cup champs — Spain in 2014, Italy in 2010 and France in 2002 — have been ousted at the group stage.
“We will not suffer that fate,” German coach Joachim Löw vowed Sunday. “We will make it to the next round.”
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In the last match of the day, Switzerland tied Brazil, 1-1, using an aggressive and physical defense to stymie the perennial favorites, who largely lacked their usual offensive flair.
While not a total surprise — FIFA ranks the Swiss sixth in the world, while Brazil is ranked second — the result was a massive disappointment for Brazil, who were humiliated in their last World Cup match, losing 7-1 to Germany in the 2014 semifinals on their home turf. On Sunday, they became the first Brazilian team since 1978 to fail to win their World Cup opener.
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