Updated on 05/24/2022, 16:08
- In light of some questionable referees’ decisions, the German ice hockey team only managed to win the preliminary round at the World Cup.
- Despite the defeat after a penalty shootout against Switzerland, there was a German point record at the end.
Germany’s ice hockey team advances to the World Cup quarter-finals in Finland with fury. Despite his record points in the preliminary round and a solid performance in second place in the group, national coach Toni Soderholm was beside himself after an unfortunate 3:4 (2:1, 0:2, 1:0) after a penalty shootout against. Switzerland. Söderholm reprimanded the referees’ team on Tuesday after their “disastrous decisions” which the national team coach denounced at “Sport 1” by saying “this is unforgivable”.
The 44-year-old Finn was proud of his team’s strong play and morale against the group winners and World Cup favourites, but Söderholm saw himself denied a win in the original time and thus the group win. Instead, Switzerland, the top of Group A, will play the United States in the quarter-finals on Thursday. Germany’s opponent wasn’t sure this afternoon and was only decided in a head-to-head duel between host country and Olympic champions Finland and the Czech Republic.
Switzerland was the favorite in the preliminary round
“Second place in the group is definitely a good and positive start for the day after tomorrow,” said striker Marcel Knoebles of German champions Isberen Berlin. But he also noted that “no matter who’s coming in now, it’s definitely going to be more difficult.” In a high-level duel between the two arch-rivals, Kai Weissmann (12th minute) of Isberen, Stefan Loebel (16) and Matthias Blachta (48) of Adler Mannheim scored the German goals in the original time.
For the Swiss favorite with seven slots in the National Hockey League, Andres Ambul (second) succeeded in his 17th World Cup appearance, Pius Sutter (22) and Denis Maljean (39) in the 60th minute. For the first time in the World Cup, Switzerland had to eliminate Extra time without scoring a goal. Nico Hescher and Damien Reyat succeeded in the penalty shootout, but no one scored for Germany.
Germany squandered a group win at the Ice Hockey World Championships
With the equalizer after 60 minutes, Switzerland’s group win and second place for Germany were already clear. The 16 points collected by the German Ice Hockey Federation’s selection in Group Seven matches, despite the defeat, is the best result in the preliminary round for a German team at a World Cup ever. “Great, I have to say,” Noebbels said of the German look so far. “But we still have to give up on that. On Thursday, no one will ask how we played in the preliminary round. It’s all about winning or losing.”
The prospects for the United States, who finished fourth in Group B, were better. And in the second third, controversial referee Linus Hollande of Sweden and Peter Stano of Slovakia denied the German team a five-minute majority for the first time. Fabrice Herzog checked out Kai Weissmann in the gang, but only got two minutes.
“There is no doubt that this is a penalty,” Soderholm complained afterwards. “It was one of the most dangerous checks I’ve seen in recent years. Anything can happen there. You can’t smooth it out. Fatal mistake.” In the brief power game that followed, no German goal was scored. Even worse: Instead of a taller German majority, the referees whistled at what Söderholm called a “cheap” penalty against Germany captain Moritz Muller, with which Malgens scored the first goal on the spot.
Criticizing referees’ decisions
In the final section, he hit Leon Jawanke’s elbow in the face, and the German defender was forced to bleed out of the ice. This also usually means five minutes plus an ice hockey game penalty. But the referees did not give even two minutes. “It’s not justified,” Soderholm said. “It is always said: we have to protect the players. But then we don’t. What happens there is very dangerous.”
However, his players showed morale and equalized with a dream goal from Blachta, who secured second place in the preliminary round. “When I see that we can keep up with such a strong team very well and we can even win, I am confident that we do not have such bad chances in the championship ourselves,” said Blachta, Nobles. (dpa/ok)