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Spain and China reach last 16 as Germany thump South Africa 4-0

Jean-Paul Pelissier, REUTERS | Lina Magull and teammates celebrate scoring Germany's fourth goal at the Stade de la Mosson in Montpellier on June 17, 2019.

Germany made it three wins in three matches with an emphatic 4-0 defeat of South Africa on Monday to go through to the knockout stages as Group B leaders ahead of Spain and China, who also qualified for the last 16 after a goalless draw.

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After labouring to secure 1-0 wins in their first two matches, Germany rolled over South Africa at the Stade de la Mosson in Montpellier for their last group game of the 2019 Women's World Cup.

"We are happy that we won the group and did so with a good performance tonight," said Sara Däbritz, who contributed the second goal. "We could have scored even more. I think we are ready for the round of 16."

Melanie Leupolz opened the scoring in the 14th minute with her first goal for Germany since the 2016 Olympics. Däbritz doubled the lead in the 29th minute and Alexandra Popp made it 3-0 in the 40th. Lina Magull added the final goal in the 58th.

The two-time tournament champion have not lost a match in group play since falling to Sweden in 1995.

Martina Voss-Tecklenburg's side, ranked second in the world, will play their next match in Grenoble on June 22 against a team yet to be decided.

Spain, who had never before reached the last 16, finished runners-up and now head to Reims for a knockout tie against either the mighty United States or Sweden.

Defender Celia Jimenez said it doesn't matter which team Spain will face because they are all good.

"The US have a really powerful team, they play a direct game, they like to be dangerous, but at the same time I think Sweden as well are a really good team," she said. "They also tend to play direct, so they kind of are similar teams. I think Spain are ready, I think we know what we play, our style of play, it's good, and I don't think it matters who we take on next."

China also go through as one of the best third-placed finishers after collecting four points, but the World Cup is now over for newcomers South Africa, who leave without a point.

(FRANCE 24 with AP)

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