The Socceroos have recorded an impressive 2-2 draw against Germany in an international friendly, with the Aussies coming close to springing a major upset on the world champions in Kaiserslautern on Thursday morning.
Marco Reus scored the opener for the hosts, with Asian Cup final hero James Troisi and skipper Mile Jedinak netting either side of half-time to give the Aussies a deserved lead.
Ange Postecoglou’s side looked on course to secure a famous win only for Lukas Podolski to snatch a late equaliser in front of almost 50,000 fans at the Fritz-Walter Stadion.
The Socceroos were forced into five changes from the XI that took the field in January’s triumphant Asian Cup decider, with Luke DeVere handed his international début in central defence.
Troisi, Nathan Burns, Matt McKay and Alex Wilkinson also started in place of injured Tim Cahill, Matthew Spiranovic and Robbie Kruse, while Massimo Luongo and Trent Sainsbury weren’t passed fit.
Despite creating a few early chances it was Germany that opened the scoring with some clinical finishing from Borussia Dortmund star Reus, who steered a nicely weighted cross past outstretched goalkeeper Mat Ryan.
The Aussies were undaunted at going behind and continued their high pressing game as they searched for an equaliser. They would find it just before the break with Burns creating space to whip in a cross that was headed home by Troisi.
The midfielder was in the thick of the action after the break also, with some neat footwork earning a free-kick in a dangerous position after he was fouled on the edge of the box.
Socceroos skipper Mile Jedinak stepped up to take the set-piece, getting the ball over the wall and into the top corner of the net to put his side ahead and on the cusp of recording a second straight win over the Germans.
Both sides made multiple substitutions in the closing stages and it was one of Germany’s changes that had the last say on the scoresheet when Podolski fired an easy shot from close range to ensure the spoils were shared.
The Socceroos will now look forward to Tuesday morning’s friendly against FYR Macedonia as they prepare for the commencement of FIFA World Cup 2018 qualifiers later this year.
Germany 2 (M. Reus 17′, L. Podolski 81′)
Australia 2 (J. Troisi 40′, M. Jedinak 50′)
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