Comeback draw caps Germany's double header test

France's forward Alexandre Lacazette celebrates scoring the 1-2 during the international friendly football match Germany against France in Cologne on Nov 14, 2017.
France's forward Alexandre Lacazette celebrates scoring the 1-2 during the international friendly football match Germany against France in Cologne on Nov 14, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

COLOGNE (Germany) • Sami Khedira said world champions Germany proved their never-say-die spirit as Lars Stindl's last-gasp equaliser preserved their 21-match unbeaten run in Tuesday's 2-2 friendly draw against France.

A first international double by Alexandre Lacazette put France on the verge of a deserved victory in a clash between two of the favourites for next year's World Cup.

The Arsenal striker scored either side of a Timo Werner goal, before Stindl struck in the 93rd minute to maintain Germany's unbeaten run dating back to the 0-2 loss to France in the Euro 2016 semi-finals.

"We had some luck in the first half, but we also had our chances to score," said Khedira, Germany's stand-in captain with Manuel Neuer injured.

"It is quite normal when playing in different line-ups that you have one or two problems," he added after his side made six changes from Friday's goal-less draw in England.

"We have been able to compete at a very high level overall this year.

"We pressed hard after the break and we also showed the morale to come from behind."

Stindl said the result capped a good year for Germany, who qualified for next year's World Cup with a perfect 10 wins from 10 qualifiers.

"Luckily we scored in the last attack," said the forward, who hit the winner in July's Confederations Cup final against Chile.

"All in all, we have put in two good performances against two strong opponents."

He was set up by Mario Goetze, who came on for his first international appearance since last November after illness and injury.

Germany coach Joachim Low said he was content with the result in Cologne as well as the stalemate at Wembley against England.

"First of all, I'm very happy with both tests against England and France - they were two tests at the highest level," he said.

"We played better in the second half. Not everything worked out the way we expected in the first.

"It can always happen that you are behind at the break, we wanted to put more pressure in the second half and then we got our chance."

France coach Didier Deschamps admitted he was disappointed with the draw. "It's a bit disappointing, we were close to getting the win," said the 1998 World Cup winner.

"We didn't pay enough attention at the end, but we made life hard for a strong German team."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2017, with the headline 'Comeback draw caps Germany's double header test'. Print Edition | Subscribe