International Friendly Report: Germany v Spain 23 March 2018

Marcus Newton
March 25, 2018

Spain boss Julen Lopetegui has paid tribute to his players following Friday's 1-1 draw with Germany in Dusseldorf.

A match between the two previous world champions at mostly live up to the billing, with an Andres Iniesta first-half masterclass seeing the Barcelona captain set up Rodrigo Moreno for an early opening goal with a superb throughball.

That was just the start Spain would have been hoping for, but Germany - also unbeaten since the European Championships in a run of 21 matches - rallied and went close through Jonas Hector and Timo Werner before Muller drew them level 10 minutes before the break with a stunning strike.

Watch the goal in all its glory below...

"The team is on a very good path and these games help us to continue growing to be at the optimum level when the World Cup arrives".

Germany next face Brazil in Berlin on Tuesday, while Spain host Argentina in Madrid in another battle of World Cup heavyweights.

Isco should have finished off another brilliant Spain move but prodded Jordi Alba's cross straight at Ter Stegen, De Gea then making another top-class save to deny substitute Gundogan when Germany countered at speed.

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Spain substitute Diego Costa had chance to snatch a late victor but he could not convert and the two countries - who could meet again in the World Cup semi-finals - ended up sharing the honours.

There is no place in the XI for Diego Costa, with Rodrigo leading the line, while Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea starts. Hummels hit the crossbar on 65 minutes with a header after Toni Kroos floated a free-kick over Spain's wall. Both teams tried to mix things up with substitutions but neither could finish off their chances.

Joao Miranda scored the opener in the 53rd minute, while Phillipe Coutinho made it 2-0 from the spot.

"Overall, I see this match very positively", said the Spain boss, who praised Thiago Alcantara and Isco for the problems they caused in Germany's midfield.

With that in mind, Lopetegui named a strong side - as did Germany counterpart Joachim Low - which included a 150th worldwide appearance for Sergio Ramos.

"In the first half we studied Russia's play and tactics and made certain changes at the break to show our best in the second half".

In the friendly with Die Mannschaft, both sides wasted big chances and the 29-year-old recognised the game could have gone either way but felt their were many positives to take.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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