BERLIN, Oct. 8 (Xinhua) -- It looks like the 2014 World Cup winner Germany is trapped in a crisis while past financial scandals also seem to be catching up on the country's soccer association.
Spain's Dani Olmo (1st R) vies with Switzerland's Silvan Widmer (2nd L) and Djibril Sow (2nd R) during the UEFA Nations League football group match between Spain and Switzerland in Madrid, Spain, Oct. 10, 2020. (Photo by Edward F. Peters/Xinhua)
Gracia had been close to resigning from the club he only joined in the summer due to his frustration over the club's work in this summer's transfer window, which saw key first team regulars such as Ferran Torres, Dani Parejo, Ezequiel Garay, Francis Coqueilin, Rodrigo Moreno and Cristiano Piccini all leave with nobody signed to replace them.
The Czech is yet to drop a set and will face fourth-seeded Sofia Kenin of the United States for a place in the final. The reigning Australian Open champion survived a fight-back from Danielle Collins in the second set and dominated the deciding one to reach the semis 6-4, 4-6, 6-0.
Matthias Ginter scored the opener for Germany after a fine cross from Antonio Ruediger, while Leon Goretzka capitalized on a mistake by keeper Georgiy Bushchan to head the ball into the net.
"With the experience I have acquired, I feel like a more complete player who can contribute to the team in whichever situation," he told a virtual press conference.
It was third time lucky for the forward, who had been called up for former Spain coach Roberto Moreno, but pulled out the squad due to injury. He was avoided from making international debut again in this September because of a false coronavirus positive test result.
It took the five-time world champions just 16 minutes to find the target, with Paris Saint-Germain defender Marquinhos meeting a curling Danilo cross with a powerful header from the edge of the six-yard box.
"We have to maintain an attacking mindset at all times," the 19-year-old told a virtual press conference.
Valverde has become indispensable for Real Madrid this season, starting in three of the team's four La Liga matches and blossoming in a box-to-box role.
"I am overjoyed to get this chance in free practice. The fact my first participation in a Formula one weekend will take place in front of my home audience at the Nurburgring makes this moment even more special," the 'little Schumacher' stated.