Germany beaten by Austria on Neuer's return

Germany beaten by Austria on Neuer's return

Germany beaten by Austria on Neuer's return

Germany are not enjoying the best preparations for the defence of their trophy after their winless run was extended by a 2-1 defeat to Austria at the Worthersee Stadion in Klagenfurt on Saturday evening.

Loew has only recently signed a contract extension with the German football federation (DFB), until the 2022 World Cup, and says he is fully focused on successfully defending the world title at Russia 2018.

Neuer has not played since fracturing a metatarsal in his left foot last September in a recurrence of the same injury he suffered earlier in 2017.

Even as Austria scored just two goals, they could have scored more and constantly threatened Germany in front of their home supporters.

The game changed after half time however, as Austria pressed Germany more and more.

Nils Petersen will make his global debut in the fixture, while Premier League stars Mesut Ozil, Leroy Sane and Antonio Rudiger are also included in the XI.

"It was a good comeback after such a long time".

"I can confirm that today, as planned, Manuel Neuer had a final medical check".

"Of course, the defeat angers me", he said.

"The defeat is annoying, we did well in the first half, but we lost a lot of ball in the second half and made life hard for ourselves". "He doesn't have any problems with his foot after the game, that's important".

The injury was the key talking point after Belgium's 0-0 draw with Portugal as both sides showed attacking intent but no killer blow less than two weeks before the World Cup begins.

Neuer was called into action on 31 as the Bayern Munich shot-stopper produced a superb save to keep out Florian Grillitsch's close-range effort.

The 32-year-old was powerless, however, when David Alaba's corner found Martin Hinteregger at the far post and he hammered a low volley past Neuer in the 53rd minute.

Neuer had his first save in the 14th minute when he dived to catch a diagonal shot by Austria midfielder Alessandro Schoepf.

Loew last coached at club level in 2004, when he was at Austrian Vienna, and under his stewardship Germany has reached at least the semi-finals of every worldwide tournament since the 2006 World Cup.

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