Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

France add to Germany's woes as Griezmann leads comeback win

Is Low’s job on the line Is Low’s job on the line
Frederick Owens | 18 October, 2018, 14:12

Germany's confidence has taken a bashing since their group stage exit at the World Cup as defending champions and two unconvincing performances in the Nations League a 0-0 home draw against France and a 3-0 loss away to the Netherlands last Saturday.

France now top Group 1 in League A with seven points from three matches while Germany are yet to win a match in their Nations League campaign after three games.

Die Mannschaft grabbed the lead in the 14th minute through a penalty by Toni Kroos after Presnel Kimpembe was penalised for a handball inside the area.

Griezmann showed ideal timing to meet Atletico Madrid teammate Lucas Hernandez's cross from the left with a glancing header which looped over Neuer's outstretched hand. He picked out midfielder Blaise Matuidi's run and centre half Mats Hummels was adjudged to have impeded Matuidi, although there was no video review available to the referee and contact appeared minimal.

"We had to stay alert at the back. stay calm and composed so as not to concede the second goal".

"It was a really good display from the young players", said Loew.

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Gnabry, making first Germany appearance since Nov 2016, intercepted a risky Kimpembe pass and saw a rasping 25-yard strike fisted away by Lloris.

Germany's Manuel Neuer dives as Antoine Griezmann (not pictured) scores France's first goal.

The result means France go four points clear at the top of the group and in pole position to qualify for the Nations League finals next summer - although the Netherlands could still claw them back as they have a game in hand. "Hugo (Lloris) ensured it was only 1-0 to them at the break and that we were still in it".

The French attack looked lost for most of the first 45 minutes as their star players struggled to get into the game. "I think we were disrupted by them playing three at the back, so we had to calmly speak a bit in the dressing and change two or three things tactically", Griezmann told French television.

"We weren't ourselves, either in the one-on-ones or in terms of the efforts we made for each other".

A brace by Antoine Griezmann in the second half including a controversial penalty secured victory for the World Champions.

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