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Germany Defeats Paraguay in World Cup Round  2 - 2002-06-15

The opening match in the second round of football's (soccer's) World Cup was played in South Korea Saturday.

These two teams had never played in a full international match before and it nearly looked like they were headed for extra time with no goals scored.

But German Oliver Neuville struck in the 88th minute in Seogwipo after a perfectly placed crossing pass from Bernd Schneider. Schneider made a fast run down the right flank, and from just at the edge of the sideline sent a cross into the middle of the box. Neuville was sprinting forward, and after the ball took a short bounce he slammed it home inside the right post.

Paraguay's young striker Roque Santa Cruz was in the game for only the first half hour, as he limped off with an injury. But it seemed to inspire the Paraguayans, and they had some decent chances to score before the half. The best was a 20-meter shot by Jorge Campos in the 38th minute that forced a spectacular save by German goalie Oliver Kahn.

Kahn preserved the shutout the rest of the way, so with the late goal, Germany earns a berth in the quarterfinals against the winner of Monday's game between the United States and Mexico.