LILLE (FRANCE), June 27: World champions Germany and Belgium stormed into the quarterfinals of the Euro 2016 with thumping victories in their respective round of 16 matches on Sunday.
Germany pulled out the right cards to trump Slovakia 3-0 while Belgium cruised into the quarters with a 4-0 win that ended Hungary�s fairytale campaign.
Jerome Boateng scored the opener for Germany in the 8th minute of the game which was followed by strikes from Mario Gomez (43) and Julian Draxler (63) in the round of 16 tie at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy.
Germany tried attacking from the outset and Sami Khedira almost gave them the lead in the sixth minute but Slovakia goalkeeper Matus Kozacik was well positioned to thwart away his header.
A little later however, Boateng found the back of the net with a crisp volley. It was a corner kick which was cleared till the edge of the box and the centre-back let loose a strong shot which was enough to beat Kozacik.
Germany kept on the pressure and had a chance to double their lead in the 12th minute. Mario Gomez was brought down in the area and they were awarded a penalty.
Mesut Ozil stepped up and let one fly of his left boot but Kozacik guessed it right and was able to palm away the strike diving to his left.
Germany had two more chances to grab a two goal cushion but both Thomas Mueller and Ozil�s efforts fizzed wide off target.
Slovakia had their moment in the 41st minute but Juraj Kucka�s header was brilliantly tipped over the bar by German custodian Manuel Neuer.
At the other end though, a few minutes later Gomez scored from close range. But the gigantic striker was set up by Draxler who delivered a pin-point pass after a delightful run.
At the break Germany led 2-0.
Slovakia tried upsetting the German tempo by bringing in Jan Gregus but it did not work either. Germany still looked menacing everytime they were on the ball.
Just after the hour mark Draxler made sure his side had their third, as he volleyed home from close using great technique.
All Germany had to do in the last 20 minutes or so was to not give too much possession away and that is precisely what they did to seal the victory.
Belgium hit four past Hungary: Belgium go into the European Championship quarterfinals for the first time since losing the 1980 final. They were dominant throughout at Stadium de Toulouse after Toby Alderweireld headed them into a 10th minute lead.
The Red Devils wasted a series of great chances to finish the game before Michy Batshuayi, with his first touch as a substitute, Hazard and Yannick Carrasco scored in the last 12 minutes.
Belgium now battle Wales in Lille, near the French-Belgian border, for a place in the semifinals.
�It�s great, we�re into the quarterfinals after a deserved win,� said Hazard.
�We could have scored more goals, and although their �keeper pulled off some great stops we�re not complaining.
�We�re in the last eight, we�re going to Lille and I hope there will be a lot of Belgians there to support us. We�re still dreaming of going further in this competition. Now, we have to rest and prepare ourselves for Friday.�
Hungary impressively won their group but if they struck any fear into Belgian hearts it did not show.
From Kevin De Bruyne�s speculative fourth-minute strike that sailed over Gabor Kiraly�s crossbar, the Red Devils were too hot for a Hungary making their return to a major tournament three decades after the 1986 World Cup.
Almost from kick-off, Kiraly was kept busy as Romelu Lukaku, then De Bruyne, after Hazard�s superb delivery, tested the goalkeeper.
When Adam Lang hauled De Bruyne to the ground on the left flank, the Manchester City forward sent in a superb inswinging free-kick that Alderweireld headed past Kiraly at his back post.
With Belgian nerves settled, Hazard in particular dazzled fans with some mazy runs, dribbles, and sublime passes that carved open the Hungarian defence. � Agencies