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U21 Euros: Augsburg′s Marco Richter stars for Germany | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW


Germany 3-1 Denmark
(Richter 28′, 52′, Waldschmidt 65′ –
 Skov pen. 73′)

When Mads Pedersen’s back-pass from the half way line to his goalkeeper fell woefully short, Marco Richter had a free run at the Danish goal, but he still had a lot to do.

Taking possession and sprinting away down the left, the 21-year-old Augsburg attacker made no mistake, cutting inside on to his right foot before firing home both his and Germany’s second goal in a 3-1 victory to kick-off Group B. In Richter’s words post-match: “Simply an amazing feeling.”

Richter has arrived at this tournament in Italy brimming with confidence after a breakthrough Bundesliga campaign.

Two-footed and thus able to operate from both flanks, Richter made 17 starts across the front three for Ausgburg last season, shooting to prominence in April when he scored back-to-back braces against Eintracht Frankfurt and Stuttgart, games which Augsburg won by a combined score of 9-1, effectively guaranteeing them safety.

Luca Waldschmidt and Marco Richter celebrate scoring

Richter needs to focus on talent

Richter’s rise though, wasn’t without its hiccups. Clearly a talented player, Richter has also been labeled a bit lazy at times. As reported in the Süddeutsche Zeitung, Richter has shirked fitness sessions and only really started regularly eating breakfast before training when he was with the first team after originally not wanting to get up 10 minutes earlier.

The arrival of Martin Schmidt at Augsburg seems to have helped Richter hit his form, and perhaps the same is true of Germany’s under-21 head coach Stefan Kuntz. The game against Denmark was only Richter’s fifth appearance at this level, but he looked comfortable when he capped off a flowing passing move with a powerful left-footed effort to give Germany a first-half lead.

Denmark did pull one back from the spot late on through Robert Skov but, by that time, Hamburg’s Luca Waldschmidt had already scored Germany’s third – set up, predictably, by Richter, who could even have completed a hat trick but fired over.

Nevertheless, it was still a perfect start to Richter’s under-21 tournament career as well as Germany’s title defense. For a team, now unbeaten in their last 13 games at under-21 level, Germany will be hoping this tournament belongs not only to them but also to their new star striker.

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