Oliver Norwood's dramatic free-kick equaliser deep into added time earned Northern Ireland an unlikely point to frustrate a Germany side that had taken the lead in the final minute.
Both teams were eager for wins to boost their bids in 2011 UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying Group 5, but all thoughts before kick-off turned to Robert Enke, with a minute's silence held for the German senior international goalkeeper who died on Tuesday. After the match got going, it was the visitors who pressed first, and Trevor Carson had to dive at full stretch to keep out a Julian Schieber header, before Northern Ireland created danger through Robbie Weir, whose cross into the box invited a finishing touch that did not come. As half-time approached, Thomas Müller looked destined to register for the defending European champions, but with an empty net at his mercy he was put off by the attentions of Ryan McGivern.
Schieber then blasted wide just ahead of the break, with James Lawrie rattling the crossbar from 25 metres out soon after the restart. That chance and another Müller miss suggested the match was destined to finish goalless, yet with less than 60 seconds of normal time remaining substitute Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting finished with ease from close range. Steve Beaglehole's charges refused to buckle, however, and Norwood fired into the top corner to earn them their first point after James McClean had been brought down by Mats Hummels on the edge of the area. Germany now find themselves under increasing threat in the section with just four points from three games, eight fewer than the Czech Republic and Iceland, the latter having played one game more.