Germany are still waiting for their first Nations League win after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Switzerland on Sunday.

The 2014 World Cup winners were relegated from League A in the inaugural 2018-19 Nations League but a change in format to the competition saved them from demotion.

Die Mannschaft's winless run was extended to five games with a draw against Spain on Thursday and they were again frustrated in Basle.

Ilkay Gundogan gave Germany the lead inside the opening quarter of an hour but an inability to convert chances came back to hurt Joachim Low's men as Silvan Widmer's well-taken goal secured a share of the spoils for Switzerland.

Germany dominated possession early on and were rewarded in the 14th minute when Gundogan rounded off a well-worked move by meeting Matthias Ginter's pull back with a composed low finish from the edge of the area.

Switzerland responded well to going behind and could have been level had Haris Seferovic made proper contact with Djibril Sow's cross.

Julian Draxler spurned a chance to double Germany's lead when he shot straight at Yann Sommer following good work down the left from Timo Werner, who then volleyed over the bar as Switzerland continued to look vulnerable at the back.

The hosts remained an attacking threat, however, Seferovic clipping the outside of the post before Granit Xhaka forced Arsenal team-mate Bernd Leno to turn his long-range drive over the crossbar.

Draxler saw an effort deflected wide seven minutes after the break and Germany's failure to double their advantage was punished when Breel Embolo cut in from the left and laid off for Widmer to find the bottom-left corner with a first-time finish.

Switzerland looked the more likely to find a decisive goal in the closing stages, with Germany's ability to keep them at bay likely cold comfort to Low as their winless run in this competition goes on.

 

Kai Havertz's move from Bayer Leverkusen to Chelsea is bad for the Bundesliga, according to Germany boss Joachim Low.

Germany allowed Havertz to leave their training camp in Stuttgart on Friday to complete a switch to Chelsea, where he signed a five-year contract.

The Blues also raided the Bundesliga for RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner, with Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell, Thiago Silva and Malang Sarr having also arrived at Stamford Bridge as reinforcements for the 2020-21 season.

Low was disappointed to see Havertz leave the Bundesliga but hopes playing abroad can help him have a bigger impact with the national team.

"I see it as a negative when such great talents like Kai are no longer in the Bundesliga," Low told a news conference on Saturday.

"But I also see the positives. Abroad, the players develop their personalities.

"I think the time is right for Kai, and the same goes for Werner. If they take the next step that will of course help us too."

Havertz was an unused substitute in Germany's 1-1 draw with Spain in the Nations League on Thursday, with Low not playing him due to his Chelsea transfer not being completed at that point.

"Kai was torn. Kai would have been good for us in the second half against Spain, but I also knew his situation," said Low.

"He would have liked to have played for the national team, but in such situations, when a transfer is imminent, you have to be careful."

Germany will be without Havertz when they face Switzerland on Sunday but Low expects to have every other player available, having confirmed Leroy Sane did not suffer a muscle injury against Spain.

"Bernd Leno will be in goal. For everyone else, I'll wait for training," said Low.

"I told Leroy we weren't taking any risks. He did not suffer any muscular injuries, but it was not to be expected that he would last the 90 minutes.

"Switzerland's development has been very good since 2014, including as individuals. They are now one of the big players. I see parallels between Switzerland and Spain in terms of the style of play."

Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara appeared to distance himself from reports of a switch to Liverpool ahead of Spain's Nations League match against Ukraine.

Thiago starred as Bayern completed a treble with a 1-0 Champions League triumph over Paris Saint-Germain last month, but has been persistently linked with a move to the Premier League winners.

Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge even said he expected the 29-year-old to depart, but Thiago said he viewed the club as his "home" after Thursday's 1-1 draw against Germany in Stuttgart.

Speaking at a news conference alongside national team boss Luis Enrique on Saturday, the ex-Barcelona man appeared to tire of a familiar line of enquiry.

"I have never said that I am leaving Bayern," he said. "Every year you [journalists] put me at a different club.

"For me, my future is tomorrow's game and there is nothing more to say.

"I neither care nor am I interested [in the speculation]. What interests me is tomorrow."

Talk over Thiago's future is likely to regain top billing in the gossip columns after Lionel Messi announced, somewhat reluctantly, that he will be staying at Barcelona.

Thiago still retains affection for his boyhood club, who Bayern thumped 8-2 in the quarter-finals of the Champions League to spark weeks of tempestuous fallout at Camp Nou.

"Any decision that is beneficial for the club you support is wonderful for that team, in this case Barcelona," he said.

"We have seen what he has said. I have nothing to evaluate. We have to respect it. I am at another club, so that neither goes nor comes to me [to comment]."

Kai Havertz left the Germany camp in Stuttgart on Friday to complete his expected move to Chelsea, the German Football Association (DFB) has confirmed.

Bayer Leverkusen forward Havertz will reportedly undergo a medical at Chelsea ahead of signing for what is expected to be an initial club-record fee of £72million (€80m), surpassing the outlay on Kepa Arrizabalaga.

It has been reported the deal could reach £90m (€100m) with add-ons.

Havertz's arrival would take Chelsea's spending on reinforcements for the 2020-21 season to over £200m, with Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner and Ben Chilwell having been secured ahead of the free transfers of Malang Sarr and Thiago Silva.

The director of Germany's national teams and academy Oliver Bierhoff said: "The future belongs to Kai – at club level and in the national team.

"Of course we would have preferred if he could have fully concentrated on the national team at the start of the new international season, but we are aware of the importance for Bayer Leverkusen and Kai and want to deal with it responsibly.

"At the same time, it is an honour and recognition for German football when young German players are in demand at top international clubs.

"The experience these players collect abroad – both in sporting and personal terms – can benefit the national team.

"We were in contact with [Leverkusen managing director] Rudi Voller in order to find a good solution."

Kai Havertz left the Germany camp in Stuttgart on Friday to complete his expected move to Chelsea, the German Football Association (DFB) has confirmed.

Thomas Muller shone for Bayern Munich last season but Germany boss Joachim Low is not planning to recall him.

Low announced Muller, Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels would not be selected again after Germany failed to get out of the group stage at the 2018 World Cup.

However, the Bayern attacking midfielder rediscovered his best form under Hansi Flick last season, accumulating a record-breaking 20 assists as the Bavarian giants stormed to an eighth straight Bundesliga title.

Bayern went on to clinch a treble by winning the DFB-Pokal and Champions League, with Muller playing a starring role in the 8-2 humiliation of Barcelona in the quarter-finals of Europe's premier club competition.

However, Low does not intend to bring the 30-year-old back into the international fold any time soon.

"Thomas Muller is a great player, no question about it, but I trust the boys," Low said following a 1-1 draw against Spain on Thursday.

"I just believe that the future belongs to the young players and they simply need time and space to develop.

"We have coped with the upheaval quite well, so I'll stick to my opinion."

However, with the coronavirus pandemic meaning the 2020-21 season is set to suffer from heavy fixture congestion ahead of the delayed Euro 2020, Low refused to completely rule out the idea of a return for Muller.

"I don't think [the schedule is] okay. The amount of games has an impact on health, fitness and quality. It simply isn't bearable for many years," said Low.

"That's why I'm extremely sensitive. If you don't act wisely and pay attention, we will have big problems in March, April, May. I try to prevent that.

He added: "I'm not a clairvoyant who looks into the future and knows what will happen in March, April. Next year there might be a few injuries and then you can change your mind. But at the moment I don't see that."

Germany forward Timo Werner was left annoyed following his team's last-gasp 1-1 draw against Spain in the Nations League.

Werner had Germany on track for victory in Stuttgart on Thursday, but Jose Gaya snatched a 95th-minute equaliser for Spain in Group 4 of League A.

Chelsea star Werner, who is preparing for his first season at Stamford Bridge after arriving from RB Leipzig, crowned a wonderful team move in the 51st minute.

However, Spain debutant Ferran Torres got to the right byline and Gaya smuggled home a finish from Rodrigo Moreno's header down at the death.

"It's annoying because we put so much into the match, we worked so hard," Werner said post-match.

"After the goal we allowed ourselves to get pegged back a little too much."

The result left Germany still searching for their first Nations League victory after drawing two and losing two in the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2018-19.

Germany head coach Joachim Low added: "I am satisfied with what I saw. Our boys gave it their all right to the end.

"It was an intense and hard-fought match – both teams put a lot into the match.

"For me, it was important not to let Spain play and in my opinion we had the better chances. In the second half it was tough to keep the pressure up."

Atalanta star Robin Gosens also made his debut for Germany, setting up Werner's goal, and he told UEFA.com: "It was a very special night, my first cap. Playing in a back three as I am used to from Atalanta makes it easier for me.

"My part is covering the entire left flank and I am pleased with the way we played as a team and the part I played."

Germany forward Timo Werner was left annoyed following his team's last-gasp 1-1 draw against Spain in the Nations League.

Werner had Germany on track for victory in Stuttgart on Thursday, but Jose Gaya snatched a 95th-minute equaliser for Spain in Group 4 of League A.

Chelsea star Werner, who is preparing for his first season at Stamford Bridge after arriving from RB Leipzig, crowned a wonderful team move in the 51st minute.

However, Spain debutant Ferran Torres got to the right byline and Gaya smuggled home a finish from Rodrigo Moreno's header down at the death.

"It's annoying because we put so much into the match, we worked so hard," Werner said post-match.

"After the goal we allowed ourselves to get pegged back a little too much."

The result left Germany still searching for their first Nations League victory after drawing two and losing two in the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2018-19.

Germany head coach Joachim Low added: "I am satisfied with what I saw. Our boys gave it their all right to the end.

"It was an intense and hard-fought match – both teams put a lot into the match.

"For me, it was important not to let Spain play and in my opinion we had the better chances. In the second half it was tough to keep the pressure up."

Atalanta star Robin Gosens also made his debut for Germany, setting up Werner's goal, and he told UEFA.com: "It was a very special night, my first cap. Playing in a back three as I am used to from Atalanta makes it easier for me.

"My part is covering the entire left flank and I am pleased with the way we played as a team and the part I played."

Luis Enrique demanded plaudits for David de Gea after the Spain goalkeeper's brilliant display during Thursday's 1-1 Nations League draw against Germany in Stuttgart.

Jose Gaya pounced deep into stoppage time to snatch a point at the Mercedes-Benz Arena after an excellent Timo Werner goal gave the hosts a 51st-minute lead.

But Manchester United goalkeeper De Gea was arguably the key to Luis Enrique's men taking a share of the spoils.

De Gea made sharp first-half saves to thwart Thilo Kehrer, Julian Draxler and Leroy Sane, while he also denied Niklas Sule at close quarters as the game moved towards its conclusion.

A string of errors for United saw the 29-year-old end the 2019-20 season at a low ebb, but Luis Enrique believes De Gea and Spain understudy Kepa Arrizabalaga, who has endured a tough time at Chelsea, have been unfairly singled out for criticism.

"He [De Gea] has played a lot of games like this in England," the Spain boss told reporters afterwards.

"We monitor him exhaustively, but he and Kepa are in the news if they make a mistake. They're used to it.

"With the game he's played we should be saying what a great goalkeeper we have.

"I'll encourage them to not fall apart and it's a position that I demand a lot from.

"But because the press give them such a hard time, I treat them more affectionately.

"They both know that their mistakes are more noticeable than those of other players, but they're used to it."

Barcelona teenager Ansu Fati became the second youngest full international in Spain's history when he came on at half-time.

Mikel Merino and Oscar Rodriguez also won their first caps from the bench, while Ferran Torres completed the whole game on his debut and the Manchester City winger's cross led to Gaya's equaliser.

"Ansu had a resounding debut," Luis Enrique added.

"There are players taking their first steps with the team and they worked well.

"They're going to play a lot more minutes. It's nice to see that people really want it."

Wolves winger Adama Traore is in line to become Luis Enrique's next debutant after he was cleared to play in Sunday's game against Ukraine, having passed medical tests following a positive test for coronavirus.

Thiago Alcantara hinted he has not entirely ruled out staying with Bayern Munich.

The Spain playmaker excelled under Hansi Flick as Bayern won the Champions League to complete a treble in 2019-20.

Thiago, 29, is out of contract next June and has been heavily linked with a switch to Liverpool.

But after a typically imperious showing – he completed 97 of 104 passes – during Spain's last-gasp 1-1 Nations League draw against Germany in Stuttgart, the former Barcelona man seemingly left the door ajar to a stay in Bavaria.

Asked whether there was "no chance" of him remaining at Bayern next season, he replied: "Bayern is my home and I am happy to be there.

"I only think about [Spain's] game against Ukraine. Afterwards we will see."

Since signing from Barcelona in 2013, Thiago has made 235 appearances for Bayern, scoring 31 goals.

Last weekend, Bayern chief executive Karl Heinz-Rummenigge said of Thiago: "It looks like he will leave us. I expect an offer for him in the next few days."

Sergio Ramos was heartened by Spain's fighting spirit and the performances of their young debutants in the dramatic 1-1 draw against Germany in League A, Group 4 of the Nations League.

Timo Werner crowned a wonderful team move early in the second half to put Joachim Low's Germany in front and their lead might have been greater but for a fine showing from Spain goalkeeper David de Gea in Stuttgart on Thursday.

Spain also had their chances, the last of which fell to Jose Gaya – the Valencia full-back who made no mistake after popping up inside the opposition box in the fifth minute of stoppage time.

After witnessing the type of goal the Real Madrid captain has become something of a specialist in for his club, Spain skipper Ramos told reporters: "In the end, hope is the last thing that is lost.

"This is a team with faith, very hungry. The victory would have been unfair for them and we fought to the end.

"The team has shown its face after a great physical demand. We have gone desperately, but with order, with faith and with a hunger to get the draw."

Barcelona teenager Ansu Fati came on at half-time to become Spain's second youngest full international of all time behind Angel Zubieta.

Mikel Merino also won his first cap from the bench, while fellow debutant Ferran Torres completed the full match and his cross led to the equaliser.

"In general, the debutants have been very good," Ramos, Spain's all-time record appearance maker, added.

"They are daring, hungry, eager. They are no longer promises, they are realities – people with heart and hunger, who push us and will be good for us.

"I'm happy for their debuts and that they did not take a defeat."

Jose Gaya snatched a 95th-minute equaliser as Spain escaped Stuttgart with a 1-1 draw against Germany, who are still looking for their first Nations League win.

Joachim Low's side drew two and lost two in the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2018-19 but looked to be heading for victory after Timo Werner crowned a wonderful team move in the 51st minute.

Spain were indebted to goalkeeper David de Gea for keeping them in the contest with a string of fine saves and pulled level deep into stoppage time.

Debutant Ferran Torres got to the right byline and Gaya smuggled home a finish from Rodrigo Moreno's header down.

Toni Kroos' impeccable deliveries unsettled Spain early on, with De Gea down sharply to keep out a Thilo Kehrer header at his near post.

It quickly became an impressive outing for the under-fire Manchester United goalkeeper, who denied Julian Draxler before flinging himself brilliantly to his right to turn a rasping Leroy Sane effort over the bar in the 18th minute.

In between those two Germany chances, an elaborate mix-up between Emre Can and De Gea's opposite number Kevin Trapp gave Rodrigo a glorious chance to open the scoring, but Leeds United's new record signing dithered and the goalkeeper got back to scramble clear.

Luis Enrique's side found themselves opened up six minutes into the second half.

Ilkay Gundogan launched a gorgeous cross-field pass to debutant Robin Gosens, romping forward from left wing-back. Sane dummied the Atalanta man's pass and Werner showed slick footwork before dispatching the finish beyond De Gea.

Sane burst clear of the Spain backline with an hour played but wastefully overhit his pass across goal to Werner, who could only fire into the side netting.

Thiago Alcantara, doing much to ensure the visitors controlled large passages of play, thundered a shot just wide from the edge of the box in the 70th minute before the equaliser came from a more unexpected source.

What does it mean? Germany impress without Bayern stars

Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, Manuel Neuer and Serge Gnabry were given this international break to recuperate by Low after inspiring Bayern Munich to Champions League glory. The strength of the line-up he was able to put out and the performance they produced spoke volumes of the enviable depth that suggests the four-time world champions can emerge confidently from a tricky couple of years. They might even win a Nations League game soon!

De Gea back on song

De Gea endured a miserable end to the 2019-20 season and those ordeals at club level can be traced back to him losing form for Spain at the 2018 World Cup. He followed his string of first-half saves with another fine stop from Niklas Sule late on, by which point this felt like a restorative performance from a keeper whose place at United will come under threat from Dean Henderson in the coming campaign.

Concern for Sane

Bayern newboy Sane was starting his first competitive match for 13 months since suffering anterior cruciate ligament damage. Understandably, his work was as ragged as it was at times impressive – never more so than the botched pass to Werner, after which he limped gingerly from the action. The winger was all smiles with Low immediately afterwards, so perhaps those in Bavaria can rest easy.

What's next?

Spain host Ukraine on Sunday, when Germany travel to Switzerland.

Joachim Low has confirmed Robin Gosens will make his Germany debut against Spain, while Leroy Sane and Niklas Sule will also start Thursday's Nations League clash.

Gosens has been included in Low's 22-man squad for the games with Spain and Switzerland after impressing for Atalanta last season in Serie A and the Champions League.

With Nico Schulz and Jonas Hector absent, the 26-year-old Gosens will slot straight into the side at left-back for Germany's first outing in 10 months.

Low also confirmed Sule and Sane will be part of the XI after recovering from long-term injuries, with the latter's last start coming in August 2019 for former club Manchester City.

Elsewhere, Kevin Trapp will deputise for Manuel Neuer in goal, with the majority of Bayern Munich's treble-winning squad being given time off after reaching the Champions League final.

"Robin Gosens will definitely be in the starting 11. He's in good form and has played well," Low said at Wednesday's pre-match news conference. 

"Kevin Trapp will be in goal. I'm also planning on starting Leroy Sane and Niklas Sule.

"I'm not sure whether we can make three or five subs. In any case, we have to look at the training rhythm and match fitness of the players. Not everyone can play 90 minutes."

Germany face a tough start to their Nations League campaign with Spain the visitors to the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Stuttgart on Thursday, followed by a trip to Switzerland.

Despite the awkward timing of the fixtures, Low insisted his players will be well up for the Group A4 match against a Spain side unbeaten in their last 11 matches.

"The players are very motivated and that's very gratifying," he said. "Even if the timing is not ideal, it is good that things are going on again with us. 

"Even if there has been a change of coach in recent times, Spain are still playing at a very high level. 

"They don't play quite the way they used to. They can also cross and have long-distance shooters. They are good pressers and have set the benchmark." 

Bayern Munich and Germany star Leroy Sane believes he is still short of full fitness and match sharpness after a tumultuous year.

Sane completed a long-anticipated €60million move to Bayern in June, a switch from Manchester City delayed in large part by a cruciate knee ligament injury sustained in the Community Shield encounter with Liverpool last August.

The 24-year-old's proposed comeback to competitive action was scuppered by the coronavirus pandemic, while an 11-minute substitute cameo in a 5-0 win over Burnley was the sum of his action between the resumption and the switch to Bavaria.

Having looked on as a keen spectator while his new team-mates wrapped up Champions League glory in Lisbon, Sane is itching for his Germany return when Die Mannschaft face Spain in the Nations League on Thursday.

"I'm doing very, very well," he told DFB.tv. "I think I'm at 80 per cent. The games and the rhythm are clearly missing. The last per cent will be added."

On what essentially amounts to a lost year in one of the most promising careers in European football, Sane reflected: "First the cruciate ligament rupture, then came the corona situation and, at the end, the move to Bayern Munich.

"It was a tough year, but a very, very good one to get to know myself even better personally."

Sane was a surprise omission from Germany's dismal 2018 World Cup campaign and won the last of his 21 caps in June 2019.

"Everyone is happy to come together again here to play football for the national team," he added.

Joachim Low believes Manuel Neuer's Champions League final performance shows he would have deserved the 2020 Ballon d'Or ahead of Bayern Munich team-mate Robert Lewandowski.

France Football announced it would not present its annual award for the world's best player this year due to the coronavirus pandemic which halted some domestic competitions in 2019-20, including Ligue 1.

The decision has prompted suggestions Lewandowski has been harshly treated, having appeared the standout candidate to succeed Lionel Messi after his 55 goals fired Bayern to a stunning treble.

The striker, who was named Germany's Footballer of the Year, last week agreed he deserved the global honour.

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge claimed earlier in August hope was not lost as FIFA had promised there would be a vote for the world's best player.

But Low, the Germany head coach, claims Bayern captain Neuer should pip Lewandowski to any award.

The goalkeeper was outstanding in the 1-0 Champions League triumph over Paris Saint-Germain, keeping Neymar and Kylian Mbappe at bay.

"Manu was in great shape throughout the 2019-20 season," Low told Kicker. "Manu is in a class of his own. Crazy, unbelievable.

"I have nothing against Robert Lewandowski - he is a top-class goalscorer - but, for me, the world's best footballer this year would be Manuel Neuer.

"What he has just done in this final round in Lisbon... He kept the door closed at the back.

"He had a very large role in winning the Champions League. Manuel was on hand in difficult situations against Lyon and Paris, otherwise it might be 0-1 or 1-1.

"You have the feeling that he is omnipresent."

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