Bastian Schweinsteiger set a new national record for the most European Championship appearances for Germany when he came off the bench during the 1-0 win over Northern Ireland.
Schweinsteiger’s appearance in Germany’s final group game was his 15th championship cap for the Nationalmannschaft, surpassing former captain Philipp Lahm’s tally of 14.
The Manchester United midfielder, 31, is currently playing at his fourth European tournament, having made his championship debut aged 19 in the 1-1 draw with Netherlands in 2004.
However, the Germany captain’s time on the pitch at Euro 2016 has so far been limited to only two appearances as a substitute, scoring in a five-minute stint in the opener against Ukraine and playing just over 20 minutes against Northern Ireland on Tuesday.
Schweinsteiger’s teammate Mario Gomez, who came off the bench in the second game against Poland, took his European Championship appearance tally up to 11 against Northern Ireland, scoring the only goal of the game to send Germany through to the knockout stages.
“We might have missed many chances to score, but we finished the group on top,” Gomez said after the game. “That was the job today and I planned to fight against those two oxen, the Northern Irish centre-backs. It was difficult.”
However, Bayern Munich star Thomas Muller remains without a goal in eight European Championship appearance for Germany. The 26-year-old — who has scored 10 times at World Cups in 13 appearances — hit both the crossbar and post as he failed to take advantage of a number of promising opportunities to score past Northern Ireland goalkeeper Michael McGovern.
“In the first half alone I could have drawn level with Gareth Bale [on three goals as Euro 2016 top scorer],” Muller said. “I am not 100 percent satisfied. It’s not only bad luck, it’s also partially inability.
“But it was a step into the right direction for the team. We created more chances than in the last eight matches combined.”
Germany will face either Albania or Slovakia in the second round.
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