By 90Min
October 09, 2019

Germany drew 2-2 with Argentina at the Signal Iduna Park on Wednesday night, as the hosts surrendered a two-goal lead. They now head into their Euro 2020 qualifying match with Estonia on Sunday with issues to iron out.

The man of the moment Serge Gnabry took centre stage 15 minutes in, weaving in between a few challenges to poke home for his tenth goal in 11 caps for Germany. With the hosts dominating, the second came shortly after as Gnabry turned provider for Kai Havertz to net his first goal for Die Mannschaft. 

Both sides hit the woodwork ahead of half-time - in soaking wet conditions - although the home side went into the break the far happier side.

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With games to come for both sides at the weekend, the quality dipped drastically in the second half, as neither side were hell-bent on over-exuding themselves on the slippery surface. Argentina did pull a goal back, however, as substitute Lucas Alario directed a superb header beyond Marc-Andre ter Stegen against the run of play.

Alario's introduction sparked the visitors into life, as sloppiness entered Germany's game, with Argentina suddenly looking the more likely to grab the game's fourth goal. That goal unsurprisingly came with five minutes remaining, with fellow substitute Lucas Ocampos firing past Ter Stegen via a deflection. No further goals arrived, with both sides leaving the match with vastly contrasting emotions.


GERMANY

Key Talking Point

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It was made very clear by Joachim Low that it was time for a new wave of German footballers in the aftermath of their World Cup embarrassment. Fortunately for him, he's got plenty to choose from.

Ter Stegen was the oldest player on the pitch for the home side at a prehistoric age of 27, with the young Germans making mincemeat of an Argentina side in the first 45 minutes that chose not to call up a number of their more headline-grabbing names. In midfield they zipped the ball across the sodden surface with consummate ease, while at the back they looked solid with a pair of full-backs who have a superb future ahead of them.

Up front there is no doubting their quality. Without some key attackers they still looked a threat at every attack as Gnabry stretched the back four with some blinding forward runs. So then, why did they lose their rhythm so drastically after the Argentina goal? Seemingly assured of their win, they misplaced passes became all-too frequent as the visitors turned the screw in the dying embers of the game. 

The collapse was one nobody could have foreseen, but as soon as the first goal went in, the second was an inevitability. Low will be aiming to iron out those errors in the coming months, after such a commanding first half showing ended in a nerve-wracking finale. Plenty of positive signs, but worrying ones to boot.


Player Ratings


Starting XI: Ter Stegen (7); Klostermann (7), Koch (7), Sule (8), Halstenberg (7); Can (6), Havertz (8), Kimmich (8); Brandt (7), Waldschmidt (6), Gnabry (8*)


Substitutes: Amiri (6), Serdar (6), Rudy (5)


Star Man

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Who else but Serge Gnabry? The former Arsenal forward is one of Europe's hottest talents at present, demonstrating the level that Tony Pulis and Arsene Wenger so carelessly shunned. His touches were perfect, the timing of his runs superb, and he tore Argentina apart in the first hour of the match. A man on fire.



ARGENTINA


Key Talking Point

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No Sergio Aguero, no Lionel Messi, no Angel di Maria, no Giovani Lo Celso...no problem? 

Fielding a centre half pairing of the much-maligned Nicolas Otamendi and hide-and-seek champion Marcos Rojo, neither looked comfortable against a German side full of endeavour. For a side blessed with immense attacking talent, the Achilles heel of Argentina in recent years been their defence, an area of Lionel Scaloni's side that needs amending after a supremely poor first half showing.

With the game falling into a lull, a superb header got them back into the match, as numerous changes added some bite to the Argentina attack. Their first goal came from nothing, albeit a wonderful header, but the second was one everyone in the stadium saw coming.

Looking like and entirely new side with the different shape they came out in, positive signs are there for the visitors that the foundations of a new-look Argentina exist. They do, however, need to sort out their defence.


Player Ratings


Starting XI: Marchesin (5); Foyth (5), Otamendi (4), Rojo (4), Tagliafico (6); Pereyra (6), Paredes (6), De Paul (7*), Correa (5); Dybala (4), Martinez (5)


Substitutes: Ocampos (7), Acuna (7), Alario (7), Saravia (6)


Star Man

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With no player offering much in either an attacking or a defensive sense in the first 66 minutes, the award goes to Rodrigo De Paul in the centre of the park for being largely solid. The Udinese number ten offered some protection in front of a shaky defence, and produced a commanding showing in the second half.


Looking Ahead


Sunday brings about Germany's next Euro 2020 qualifying match, as they travel to Estonia aiming to maintain their spot at the top of Group C

It is more friendly duty for Argentina, as they too are on their travels on Sunday but back in the familiar surroundings of South America as they take on Ecuador.

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