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Football: DFB team defeats Netherlands in friendly match

Football: DFB team defeats Netherlands in friendly match

The German national soccer team defeated the Netherlands despite falling behind early on. It was only in the final minutes of the game that German superiority paid off.

Match winner Niclas Füllkrug beamed with high fives with his teammates, the ecstatic fans cheered enthusiastically, and the Queen hit “Don’t Stop Me Now” blared from the loudspeakers. The national soccer team made a perfect start to the European Championship year and raised hopes for a new summer fairy tale. 80 days before the opening game at the home European Championship, the DFB team, newly formed by national coach Julian Nagelsmann, won the second big test against Oranje 2-1 (1-1) after the 2-0 win in France.

“The good news is that we played two very good test games. The bad news is that it doesn’t bring us any points for the tournament,” said returning player Toni Kroos, who was once again strong, on RTL. After the early deficit caused by Joey Veerman (4th minute), the team showed a strong reaction, said the Real Madrid professional. A few months ago the team would have “half collapsed, but that didn’t happen.” They “carried along the momentum” from the win against France.

Quick equalizer against the Netherlands

Stuttgart’s Maximilian Mittelstädt quickly equalized with a wonderful long-range shot under the crossbar (11th), and substitute Füllkrug (85th) scored the deserved winning goal with his shoulder. At the premiere in the pink jersey in the sold-out Frankfurt European Championship stadium, the German team demonstrated the long-missed tournament readiness with their enthusiasm and commitment. Something is developing under the ambitious Nagelsmann.

In just one week, the national coach found a formation that, after years of sadness at the European Championships, can be trusted with a lot – perhaps even everything. Before the tournament emergency on June 14th in Munich against Scotland, Nagelsmann can still work on the fine-tuning in the training camp and the tests against Ukraine and Greece.

Minute’s silence before the test match

Before kick-off, a minute’s silence was held in honor of the deceased world champions Franz Beckenbauer and Andreas Brehme. Rudi Völler was particularly touched by this. Shortly beforehand, the DFB sports director had promised the fans over the stadium microphone: “We want to take the momentum with us and build on it.” Nagelsmann sent the same starting eleven onto the field as in the convincing start to the European Championship year. But initially the game went differently than against France.

This time the German team didn’t take the lead early on, but quickly fell behind. After a weak back pass from Mittelstädt, central defender Jonathan Tah acted hesitantly against Memphis Depay. The Oranje attacker was able to cross relatively unhindered to the inside, where Veerman, unmarked, volleyed in a remarkable finish.

DFB team reacts to being behind

The DFB selection was not shocked by this – on the contrary. The quick answer came from Mittelstädt, of all people, who corrected his mistake before the 0-1 with a powerful left-footed shot under the crossbar after a short corner from Kroos and an assist from Jamal Musiala. As was the case against France with Florian Wirtz’s eight-second record goal immediately after kick-off, the DFB team scored after a well-rehearsed move.

Test match before the European Championship: Thanks to Füllkrug: the DFB team wins late against the Netherlands

The fans celebrated the first goal in the second international match by Stuttgart left-back Mittelstädt “completely detached”: In the neighboring duel, the DFB fulfilled the wish of many supporters to play “Major Tom” by Peter Schilling when scoring their own goals. By the time an online petition was completed, almost 70,000 votes had been received.

Germany dominates

After the 1-1 draw, Germany largely controlled the game. In the defensive midfield, returnee Kroos once again set the pace with ball confidence, a kind of quarterback who was always able to free himself from Tijjani Reijnders’ man-marking. In front of Kroos, the two offensive youngsters Musiala and Florian Wirtz showed their class. They rotated a lot and were difficult for the Dutch defense to grasp. After a fine pass from Musiala, Ilkay Gündogan made it 2-1 in the 18th minute. But the captain’s finish was no problem for visiting goalkeeper Verbruggen.

Overall, Gündogan played better in his 75th international match than he did last in France. The FC Barcelona professional also prevented the second Oranje goal in the 33rd minute when he saved a corner from Dortmund’s Donyell Malen after a header from Munich’s Matthijs de Ligt was ready to take a shot.

Netherlands come out of the break better

After the break, the guests came out of the locker room a little better, and the Germans were sometimes vulnerable in defense, as was the case with Depay’s great chance (61′). The first German exclamation mark of the second half was again set by Mittelstädt, who tested Verbruggen with a powerful long-range shot (65th).

Overall, the game got worse on the slippery pitch. Nagelsmann reacted and brought in two fresh offensive players in Thomas Müller and Füllkrug; the draw didn’t seem to be enough for him. The players on the pitch seemed to have understood the message and increased the pressure again. Musiala (76th) and Müller (83rd) initially failed with two good chances, then Füllkrug struck: After a corner from Kroos, the Dortmund player maneuvered the ball into the goal with his shoulder.

Note: This article has been updated with post-game reactions.

Source: Stern

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