Australia rallies to upset Germany 2-1 in friendly
Australia scored two goals in four second-half minutes to come from behind and beat Germany 2-1 in an international friendly on Tuesday.
David Carney leveled the match in the 61st and David Wilkshire converted a penalty in the 64th to help the Socceroos beat Germany for the first time in four matches.
Australia lost the previous three, failing to concede fewer than three goals in each match.
Mario Gomez had given a reshuffled German team the lead in the 26th minute.
”We never expected such a result,” said Holger Osieck, Australia’s German coach. ”I have great respect for Germany, regardless who is on field, they are all excellent players. We wanted to play well but we never though about such a result.”
Andre Schuerrle, one of eight new players brought in by coach Joachim Loew, created Germany’s goal by muscling his way through the defense and feeding a short pass to Gomez, who drilled a shot into the upper right corner of the net.
In a slow-paced match, Germany had the upper hand in the first half but no great chances. While the best for Australia came in the 43rd from a header by Mile Jedinak, but Tim Wiese in Germany’s goal saved the effort.
Germany began well in the second half and created some pressure but it was Australia that scored.
Carney took the German defense by surprise in the 61st and broke free to slot the ball through the legs of Wiese to equalize.
Three minutes later, Harry Kewell earned a penalty when he was brought down by Christian Traesch.
Wilkshire, a defender like Carney, drilled the ball down the middle, Wiese got his fingers on it but could not hold the powerful shot.
Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer stopped Schuerrle’s solo effort in what was Germany’s best effort in the second half.
Loew used the friendly to test young players, althought he brought on veteran Miroslav Klose in the 73rd.
The striker had scored in his last six games for Germany and his appearance made Klose the second most capped Germany player with 108 games, a mark he now shares with Juergen Klinsmann. Lothar Matthaeus has 150.
Klose’s most notable action ended with a yellow card when he tried to earn a penalty but was judged to have dived.
Loew complained that some of Australia’s tackling was too hard for a friendly, but added: ”It’s good for young players to get a taste of what they can expect in qualifying.”
Germany lost for the first time since last year’s 1-0 defeat to Spain in the semifinals of the World Cup. In the group stage of that tournament, Germany trounced Australia 4-0.
In qualifying for the 2012 European Championship, Germany has won all five games.
Germany: Tim Wiese; Christian Traesch, Arne Friedrich, Mats Hummels, Marcel Schmelzer, Bastian Schweinsteiger (Toni Kroos, 65), Sven Bender, Andre Schuerrle, Thomas Mueller (Mario Goetze, 65), Lukas, Podolski, Mario Gomez (Miroslav Klose, 73).
Australia: Mark Schwarzer; Lucas Neill, David Carney, Sasa Ognenovski, Luke Wilkshire, Brett Holman (Brent McGrath, 90), Brett Emerton, Carl Valeri, Mile Jedinak, Harry Kewell (Robbie Kruse, 80), Matt McKay.