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Austria's 2-0 Win Increases Pressure on Nagelsmann for Euro 2024

 Austria's 2-0 Win Increases Pressure on Nagelsmann for Euro 2024

Julian Brandt of Germany is challenged
Julian Brandt of Germany is challenged by 19au during the international friendly match between Austria and Germany at Ernst Happel Stadion on November 21, 2023 in Vienna, Austria.(Image-Getty) 

Austria delivered a commanding performance, securing a 2-0 victory against a lackluster Germany in their Tuesday friendly. The hosts, already qualified for the Euros, dominated from the outset, as Marcel Sabitzer's precise strike in the 29th minute propelled them ahead. Germany struggled to mount any offensive threat, registering their first shot on goal after 32 minutes.

Austria's Christoph Baumgartner extended the lead with a skillful chip over keeper Kevin Trapp in the 73rd minute, capitalizing on Germany being reduced to 10 men following Leroy Sane's red card in the 49th minute. This defeat marked Germany coach Julian Nagelsmann's second consecutive setback after a 3-2 home loss to Turkey on Saturday, putting pressure on the team ahead of Euro 2024, which they are set to host.

Nagelsmann attributed the struggles to a lack of unity on the pitch and criticized the team's "absurd rate of loss of possession in the first half." Acknowledging the challenges ahead, he emphasized the need for hard work and unity, stating, "We are not that unit that we are off the pitch. It is just missing on the pitch."

Austria's high-pressing game overwhelmed the error-prone Germans, who introduced Thomas Mueller in the second half but failed to shift the momentum. Sane's frustration reached a boiling point in the 49th minute when he received a straight red card for grabbing Phillipp Mwene by the throat. This marked Sane's first red card in his 402nd professional football appearance.

Germany's disappointing evening was sealed as Baumgartner secured the second goal, and despite late chances for Austria, Germany was unable to recover. The result compounds Germany's challenges, leaving Nagelsmann with significant work to do before the Euros.

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