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Mertesacker unhappy with Germany criticism

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By Joe Haining

Tuesday 01 July 2014

Defender Per Mertesacker has hit out at critics after Germany progressed to the World Cup quarter finals with a narrow win over Algeria, reports BBC Sport.

Per Mertesacker

Germany toiled against the north Africans, requiring extra time to see off their unfancied rivals. Algeria gave absolutely everything in the engaging and highly entertaining second round clash, before finally falling to goals from André Schürrle and Mesut Özil in the 92nd and 119th minutes. The Fennec Foxes hit back with an injury time goal from Abdelmoumene Djabou but it was not enough to stop the Germans progressing.

But the Europeans came in for heavy criticism for their less than convincing performance, prompting Arsenal man Mertesacker to ask: "Would you rather we played beautiful football but got knocked out?"

The 29-year-old defender also recognised the part that Algeria had played in the tie, saying: "Do you think just Mickey Mouse teams are in the last 16? All that matters is we're in the quarter-finals."

Goalscorer Schürrle and coach Oliver Bierhoff also added their praise for the Algerian performance, although insisted that they were prepared for the threat that the Africans posed. "We weren't surprised by Algeria," said Bierhoff. "They played the tactics we expected but we didn't play well.”

While acknowledging that the team had not been at their best, former striker Bierhoff still felt they merited their victory, saying: "We didn't play well in the first half. In the second half we missed some great chances, and I think overall if you look at the game it was a hard but deserved victory."

Germany go on to face France in the quarter finals on Friday.

View the latest World Cup 2014 odds and betting here

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