Mon, May 28, 2012 - Page 18 News List

German pride dented by Switzerland

‘KATASTROPHE’:Germany were beaten 5-3 in Basel and the Netherlands suffered a shock defeat to Bulgaria, while European champions Spain and England both posted wins

Reuters, LONDON

Van Marwijk’s mood was not helped by a hamstring injury to defender Joris Mathijsen, who limped off.

“Joris felt something in his hamstring and wanted to avoid any risk,” Van Marwijk told reporters. “It was an annoying match, especially after the penalty, before that we did everything well, although we did not create a lot of chances.”

England’s new coach Hodgson, appointed on May 1 to replace Italian Capello, who guided the team to the finals, said he was satisfied with the performance of an experimental side that featured Liverpool’s Andy Carroll and Ashley Young up front.

They could form England’s attack in the Euro 2012 opener against France in the absence of Wayne Rooney, who is suspended for the first two matches, and Young’s classy ninth-minute strike did his chances no harm.

“I thought he [Carroll] was good. Full stop. Not only was he good for us when we had the ball ... he was also very important to us defensively,” said Hodgson, whose main concern was a groin injury to midfielder Gareth Barry.

Portugal were jeered by their own fans after a disappointing 0-0 draw with Macedonia, while Greece, who travel to the finals aiming to produce another shock like they did in 2004 when they were European champions, drew 1-1 with Slovenia.

Denmark lost 3-1 to Brazil after Hulk scored twice for the South Americans in Hamburg, Germany, but fellow Euro 2012 outsiders the Republic of Ireland and the Czech Republic secured morale-boosting wins against Bosnia and Israel respectively.

Saturday’s other international friendlies:

‧ Costa Rica 3, Guatemala 2

‧ El Salvador 2, Moldova 0

‧ Finland 3, Turkey 2

‧ US 5, Scotland 1

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