Germany sink Spain right at the death in wet and windy Vigo

It’s a wet and windy evening on Spain’s Atlantic coast – one might call it “Fritz Walter Wetter”! This prestige friendly and Germany’s final fixture of the year sees the Nationalmannschaft and their predecessors as World Champions Spain meet for the first time since July 2010 – when La Roja would triumph in the semi-final en route to their first world title.

Nationaltrainer Jogi Löw has named an interesting starting lineup. Hannover 96’s Ron-Robert Zieler is preferred over more experienced custodian Roman Weidenfeller in goal, while a new-look back four sees Antonio Rüdiger join Shkodran Mustafi, Benedikt Höwedes and Erik Durm. Sebastian Rudy joins Sami Khedira to form a new defensive midfield partnership, while Toni Kroos moves up the pitch to join Thomas Müller and Mario Götze. As expected, Kevin Volland replaces Max Kruse up front.

With Manuel Neuer being rested Khedira takes the captain’s armband for the first time, as he meets long-standing Spanish skipper Iker Casillas in the middle. Spain are in all red and Germany in their now familiar all white.

With no live television coverage here in the UK I have managed to find a decent and surprisingly smooth stream (thanks @hendocfc!) with coverage in English. The ESPN commentator can’t pronounce any of the players’ names for toffee, but I’m not complaining. Well, not yet anyway.

1 min. The home side kick off.

2 mins. Germany launch their first attack as Durm combines with Volland down the left, but the Hoffenheim man’s cross is cleared by the Spanish defence.

4 mins. Zieler is put under slight pressure by a poor back pass, but clears successfully.

5 mins. Spain look to break down the left, but Bayern München’s Juan Bernat sends his cross too high. The play swings to the other end, and Rudy’s right-wing cross looks to find Volland. He can’t get any strength behind his shot however, and Casillas collects.

7 mins. Vicente del Bosque’s men have made the brighter start, and the German defence manages to keep its shape despite looking a little bit shaky.

9 mins. Germany find themselves passing the ball around at the back as their opponents press, and Zieler hoofs the ball clear. It’s been a while since we’ve seen that sort of thing from a German ‘keeper.

12 mins. The home side continue to pres, and debutant Nolito finds enough space to send a curling shot that is well turned behind by Zieler. The German ‘keeper then collects the resulting corner as he looks to settle down.

15 mins. It’s looking a little more balanced now as Germany get a bit more of the ball, but the men in red are continuing to look the more dangerous of the two teams.

16 mins. The rain is getting heavy now, and there’s just a little bit of wind too. Having been clattered by Sergio Ramos Müller makes his way to the bench for a bit of treatment. Someone clearly hasn’t told the tempestuous Real Madrid defender that this is a friendly.

18 mins. Raúl Garcia hits a low shot that is on target, but it is straight at Zieler who gathers the ball cleanly.

20 mins. Some patient approach play from the Mannschaft, who finally put together some nice passes in the Spanish half. Götze exchanges a neat one-two with Müller and hits a crisp shot, forcing the veteran Casillas into an excellent save.

25 mins. Álvaro Morata beats Mustafi down the left and his cross is cleared, and as Spain look to follow up Isco sends a shot high over the crossbar.

21 mins. Müller is continuing to struggle, and the Nationaltrainer is forced to make an early change. Karim Bellarabi comes as Müller heads straight for the dressing room.

26 mins. Spain are continuing to move the ball around about nicely in the German half, but are unable to get a shot on goal. Isco and Morata are looking particularly sharp, but the men in white are closing things down effectively.

30 mins. The ball is floating around dangerously in the German penalty area and there’s just a bit of panic for Löw’s men as the ball goes behind for a corner.

33 mins. Sergio Busquets makes an error to set up a German attack, but the move slows down allowing more red shirts to make their way back into the box. Bellarabi bursts into the box towards the byline and sends in a sharp low cross that fizzes across the six yard box, and there’s a degree of panic among the Spanish defenders before Rudy sends a shot high over the target.

35 mins. The Mannschaft are looking sharper now, with Bellarabi showing plenty of energy with some nice darting runs.

36 mins. The visitors break fast down the middle of the pitch and Volland has a sight of goal, but his misplaced pass towards Bellarabi is interceped and cleared.

39 mins. Toni Kroos has been largely anonymous, and when he does get a touch of the ball he is crowded out by a group of red shirts and gives it away.

41 mins. Bellarabi and Götze combine nicely, but the Spanish defence are well marshalled and clear the danger. After a slightly wobbly start Löw’s men have finally established a foothold in the game and are looking a whole lot better as half-time approaches.

44 mins. Spain win a free-kick out on the right and it is floated in nicely for Raúl Garcia who sends his shot high over the target.

45 mins. Volland bursts down the left and floats in a teasing cross which Bernat somehow manages to put behind for a corner. I don’t think he has any idea what he was doing as the ball lands on the top of the net.

45+1 mins. The whistle is blown for half time.

Spain would start brightly and look dangerous during the early stages, but Germany would slowly start to establish themselves as the game went on. Bellarabi has looked the most effective player for Germany going forward, while at the back Rüdiger has turned out a solid forty-five minutes.

The best chance would fall for the visitors, and there will be plenty of encouragement in the German dressing room for what promises to be an interesting second half.

There are a three changes for the home side as Marc Bartra, Ignacio Camacho and Raul Albiol come on for Ramos, Busquets and Gerard Piqué.

46 mins. Germany get the second half underway. Spain launch the first attack, but Morata’s slightly scuffed effort is easily collected by Zieler.

48 mins. Höwedes makes a run down the left flank but his floated cross into the Spanish box is easily cleared by Bernat.

51 mins. Volland has an effort blocked by Bartra, and the men in white are looking dangerous in and around the Spanish box. Things has settled down nicely between what are two well-matched sides.

52 mins. Spain break quickly, and Zieler quickly charges out of his penalty area to do a “Neuer” and clear the danger.

54 mins. Germany are holding possession well now, and a floated free-kick from Kroos falls for Rüdiger whose shot is deflected behind for a corner. The Nationalelf side have looked considerably sharper than they did against Gibraltar, but the corners are still poor.

56 mins. Spain almost break through Morata, but Höwedes does brilliantly to win the ball on the slide.

58 mins. Nolito makes a run towards the edge of the German box and slips past Rudy before being bundled over by Rüdiger. The crowd raises their voices for the free-kick, but Nolito’s effort is turned behind by a flying Zieler.

62 mins. Spain launch another attack, but the busy Nolito is well marshalled by Rüdiger. Spain win a corner, but can do nothing with it. Germany look to break quickly but Bellarabi is manhandled by Raúl Garcia who is shown the first yellow card of the evening.

64 mins. More good play again by the visitors at the edge of the opposition penalty area, but they are unable to deliver the killer final ball. Khedira finds some space but his well-struck shot is blocked.

66 mins. Volland needlessly gives the ball away in his own half, but Spain are unable to profit from the error.

69 mins. Germany are challenging well for the ball as they look to up the pressure on the Spanish defence. They are moving the ball around nicely now.

70 mins. Spain make another change, with Raúl Garcia making way for Jose Maria Callejon.

71 mins. A floated long ball into the Spanish box is pushed away by Casillas, just enough to take the ball away from the fast advancing Bellarabi.

72 mins. A nicely flighted Kroos cross almost reaches Volland, but the offside flag is raised. It’s a marginal decision, but Casillas wins the ball anyway.

73 mins. Germany are stretched a little, and Rudy is forced to put the ball behind for a corner.

75 mins. Morata has a shot from distance but slices it badly. The ball balloons high and wide of the target.

76 mins. More changes for Spain sees Rodriguez Pedro come on for Nolito, and there’s also a goalkeeping change as Casillas makes way for the similarly-named Kiko Casilla.

79 mins. Casilla sees the ball for the first time as Volland has a snapshot from some twenty-eight yards out. Given the tricky conditions, it’s an excellent save by the Espanyol stopper.

80 mins. Götze looks to weave through a nest of red shirts and make his way into the danger zone but is evetually outnumbered.

82 mins. Isco makes a burst down the left and Pedro has the space to have a shot which Zieler turns behind.

83 mins. Morata has the ball in the German net, but the flag had already been raised for offside. The decision is again marginal.

84 mins. Germany make only their second change, with Max Kruse coming on for Götze.

85 mins. Bellarabi looks to chase the ball down in the penalty area, but is penalised for his robust challenge on the defender.

88 mins. Some worryingly slack defending from the Germans side allows Spain to set up another attack, but the ball is finally cleared.

89 mins. Germany make their way through the middle of the field, and after collecting a square ball from Kruse the languid Kroos has time and space to have a shot at goal from some twenty-five yards out with his right foot. The ball skids nastily off the turf, and it goes right through Casilla and into the bottom left-hand corner of the net. 1-0.

Goalscorer Toni Kroos leads the team as they take greet the visiting German supporters by the touchline

90+2 mins. Skipper Khedira is replaced by Lars Bender as the Mannschaft look to see out the two minutes of additional time and win their first game against Spain for fourteen years, and their first on Spanish soil since the World Cup finals in 1982.

90+3 mins. The final whistle blows.

It has been an interesting battle in a wet and windy Vigo, and after an even contest Joachim Löw’s side can close out the year on a high. The Mannschaft win the battle of the World Champions, and the Germans in the 25,000 crowd are in excellent voice.

It may only be a friendly, but this has been an excellent performance by a German side missing a number of key players in testing conditions against a decent – if also slightly experimental – Spanish side. If just to rub a little salt into Spanish wounds, this is the first defeat for La Roja at home under Vicente del Bosque – a record that had stretched back to 2008.

v Spain, Estadio Municipal de Balaídos, Vigo, 18.11.2014

1-0 (0-0)
Kroos 89. / –

Germany: Zieler – Rüdiger, Mustafi, Höwedes, Durm – Rudy, Khedira (c) (90+2. L. Bender) – Müller (22. Bellarabi), Kroos, Götze (84. Kruse) – Volland

Spain: Casillas (c) (77. Casilla) – Azpilicueta, Piqué (Raúl Albiol), Sergio Ramos (46. Bartra), Bernat – Busquets (46. Ignacio Camacho), Bruno Soriano – Raúl Garcia (70. José Callejon), Isco, Nolito (77. Pedro) – Morata

Referee: Stefan Johannesson (Sweden)
Assistants: Mehmet Culum, Fredrik Nilsson (Sweden)
Fourth Official: Carlos Del Cerro Grande (Spain)

Yellow Cards: – / Raúl Garcia
Red Cards: – / –

Ball Possession: 52% / 48%
Attempts on Target: 2 / 4
Attempts off Target: 2 / 3
Corners: 3 / 7
Fouls Committed: 8 / 7

Attendance: 25,000

Germany sink Spain right at the death in wet and windy Vigo

3 thoughts on “Germany sink Spain right at the death in wet and windy Vigo

  • November 19, 2014 at 19:39

    Very good points Rick. I notice Thomas Müller is now on the same number of caps as Gerd!(Obviously they play more games now). What an achievement Gerd’s 68 goals were in those 62 appearances. Thomas’s goals per game ratio is excellent as well.

  • November 19, 2014 at 15:20

    I noticed in a lot of reports that the biased press couldn’t wait to say that Spain were missing top players. The same can be said for Germany. A great result even though it was a friendly. Nice to beat them at home. I detest Sergio Ramos – he is nothing more than a thug and his taking out of Müller was typical of him. He is an affront to football. I see that Germany are scheduled to play the plodders England in a friendly in March 2016.

    • November 19, 2014 at 16:15

      I’d say the balance of experienced and inexperienced players was about equal. If anything, Spain would have more experience in starting with some big guns such as Casillas (160 caps), Busquets (74), the dirty Ramos (124) and Piqué (65). Germany’s most experienced players would be Müller (62), Kroos (57) and Khedira (52). As always, bullshit is always out-trumped by cold, hard fact.

      England in March 2016 should be interesting!


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