Cologne - Germany will have to wait to confirm their place at UEFA EURO 2016 after a surprise 1-0 defeat to the Republic of Ireland on Thursday.
Republic of Ireland 1-0 Germany
Goals: 1-0 Long (70’)
Given their status as world champions, Joachim Löw's men were unlikely ever to start out looking for just the point they required to progress.
Jerome Boateng headed over before a deflection off John O’Shea's outstretched leg took an Ilkay Gündogan shot over the bar that appeared destined for the net. An adductor injury to Mario Götze did not knock the visitors out of their stride as they threatened to break the deadlock.
They did not, however, manage to beat home goalkeeper Darren Randolph, who was a first-half substitute for the injured Shay Given. The West Ham United man tipped away oneThomas Müller effort before Shane Long burst onto a long clearance from Randolph and sent a sublime rising drive beyond Manuel Neuer with Ireland's only significant foray forward.
Müller should have levelled but the FC Bayern München man's recent clinical form deserted him as he shot over, and Randolph parried a Boateng drive as Ireland clung on desperately. Germany now need to avoid defeat to Georgia in Leipzig on Sunday to progress automatically.
Man of the Match
Jerome Boateng provided two assists in Der Klassiker and in the colours of Germany was - surprisingly - one of the most likely to provide the goal that would have taken his nation to France.
Germany have stuttered throughout this qualifying campaign. Is it merely a post-World Cup hangover or does Löw have real cause for concern?
- It was Germany's first-ever competitive defeat to Ireland (3W 3D 1L).
- Ireland are now unbeaten in nine home games.
- Germany had 11 attempts, three on goal; Ireland had four in total, two on target.
- Germany need a point to be sure of going through with second-placed Poland and Ireland in third - both of whom are a point behind the section leaders - playing each other in Warsaw on Sunday.
Ireland: Given (Randolph 43') – Christie, Keogh, O’Shea (c), Ward (Meyler 69')– Hendrick, McCarthy, Brady – Walters, Hoolahan, Murphy (Long 65')
Germany: Neuer (c) – Ginter (Bellarabi 77'), Hummels, Boateng, Hector – Gündogan (Volland 85'), Kroos – Müller, Özil, Reus – Götze (Schürrle 35')