After claiming a hand in all four of Germany’s goals on Saturday afternoon in Munich, Kai Havertz reflected on an important victory for his nation at Euro 2020 and his role in the success.
The 22-year-old made history for Die Mannschaft in their 4-2 win against the reigning European champions Portugal in Group F, becoming Germany’s youngest ever goalscorer at a Euros tournament when he steered in from close range to make it 3-1 early in the second half.
Havertz had been involved in the flowing move that preceded that goal and also played a part in the three others for the hosts. His presence forced two first-half own goals to turn the game on its head after Cristiano Ronaldo’s opener, before the forward’s pass on the hour mark proved the pre-assist for Germany’s fourth.
It handed the 2014 World Cup winners their first points of the tournament and leaves Group F finely poised ahead of the final round of group fixtures. After the game, Havertz spoke to the media about his involvement and the team's efforts.
‘The victory was very important for us,’ he said. ‘I think you could see that we had a lot of enthusiasm for the game.
‘We had many chances to score but then we conceded the first goal through a stupid counter-attack, but we can be satisfied with our performance. We played them well.’
Following a defeat to France in their opening game, the win was important for Germany’s hopes of advancing to the last 16 and Havertz pinpointed the team’s refusal to panic in the intervening days as crucial to their bright response.
On a personal note, after netting the Champions League final winner late last month, a first tournament goal for his country represented another milestone in the young forward's burgeoning career.
‘It was important not to throw everything overboard after the France game, but to stay true to ourselves,’ he continued. ‘We trust the system and we trust the players.
‘I also trust my own strengths and I’m happy to have contributed with a goal.’
The Germans finish their group campaign against Hungary at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday, with victory guaranteed to take them through to the knockout stage.
‘The chances of reaching the last 16 are good but nothing is done yet,’ warned Havertz.
‘We still have a tough game ahead of us. Hungary will be a tough opponent that you cannot underestimate. They will demand everything from us.’