Germany draw 1-1 with Spain as Costa makes comeback

World champions Germany drew 1-1 with Spain in a high tempo friendly on Friday as they launched their preparations for a title defence in Russia and Spaina��s Diego Costa made his comeback following a transfer ban.

Germany were made to work hard against the Spaniards, unbeaten under coach Julen Lopetegui, but still managed to stretch their own unbeaten run to 22 matches, one shy of the German record of 23 dating back to 1978-80.

They can now match it when they take on Brazil on Tuesday. Spain, the 2010 World Cup winners, host Argentina in Madrid.

The visitors, with captain Sergio Ramos earning his 150th cap, went ahead when Rodrigo Moreno timed his run perfectly to pick up a superb through ball from Andres Iniesta and beat keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen in the sixth minute.

The Germans, who at times struggled with their opponentsa�� quick passing, managed to draw level with an unstoppable 20-metre strike from Thomas Mueller in the 35th.

Keepers David de Gea and Ter Stegen were kept busy after the break and Mats Hummels hit the crossbar with a looping header from a clever Toni Kroos free kick as both sides carved out good scoring chances.

Spaina��s Costa made his comeback as a substitute in the second half after the combative forward missed out on action late last year due to being unable to play for his club because of a transfer ban.

Costa had completed a 57 million pound ($80.6 million) deal to rejoin Atletico from Chelsea in September, but the move was delayed by La Liga cluba��s ban on registering new players, which expired on Jan. 1.

His return is good news for Lopeteguia��s team, one of the title contenders at the World Cup in Russia in June.

The Germans have been drawn in Group F of the tournament, along with Mexico, South Korea and Sweden .

Spain are in Group B and will play Iran, Morocco and Portugal. ($1 = 0.7075 pounds).

Reuters

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SOURCE :The Nigerian Voice (sport)

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