Germany's Loew opts for fringe players against Brazil

Barcelona record signing Philippe Coutinho is expected to start on Tuesday night in Berlin

"When I look at the current team in comparison to 2014, they are two grades better". Gabriel Jesus' first-half headed goal settled the friendly and provided his side with a welcome confidence boost some three months before the World Cup.

Memories of the 7-1 loss suffered at the hands of a rampant Germany team on home soil at World Cup 2014 still rumble on for football's most-successful nation.

"They are a great team with a good mix of old and young players, they are technically strong, but they also have tough players in defence."They can´t be underestimated, because they are clearly among the World Cup favorites".

Manchester City midfielder Gundogan played for Borussia Dortmund at the time and was ruled out of the tournament through injury, leaving him to watch on in shock with the rest of Germany as events unfolded at the Estadio Mineirao.

The Germans tried to get an equaliser before the break with Mario Gomez, vying for a spot in the World Cup squad, coming close twice.

Germany displayed some promising defensive organisation in the second period, but they were again tested after a smart counter found Coutinho in space on the edge of the area, the Barcelona playmaker firing over the bar without testing Trapp. The problem for them is that Brazil have well and truly moved forward - on the pitch at least. Gabriel Jesus's first-half header was the difference, and it snapped Germany's 22-game unbeaten run, which dated back to the Euro 2016 semifinals. "It's present, people still talk about it, but the more you talk about it, the less this 'ghost" disappears.

The Brazil of 2014 allowed the emotion of the occasion to completely subsume them, as Germany went about their business with brutal efficiency.

After a tempered opening, Philippe Coutinho was the first to threaten as he stole possession and beat two men inside the Germany box, only to pass straight into the path of Antonio Rudiger with two Brazilian shirts waiting.

Unless Tite has a sudden change of mind, or injuries mount, neither can expect to go Russian Federation, and even the first-choice status of PSG's Thiago Silva, who missed the Belo Horizonte battering with a suspension, is doubtful.

But Germany will confidently argue they have progressed, too, since they lifted the World Cup and thrashed the favourites to reach the final.

Sane is one thrilling representative of a new generation, eyeing a position on the left of the forward line which manager Joachim Low wants to inject speed into.

Manuel Neuer of Germany lifts the World Cup trophy.



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