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Germany cling on against battling Chile

Germany 1-0 Chile
Mario Götze struck the first-half winner for Joachim Löw's men who were made to cling on by the battling South Americans

Mario Götze celebrates putting Germany ahead
Mario Götze celebrates putting Germany ahead ©AFP/Getty Images

Mario Götze's first-half strike earned Germany a narrow friendly victory against a battling Chile outfit in Stuttgart.

Germany avoided conceding an early goal as Philipp Lahm cleared Arturo Vidal's header off the line nine minutes into the game but the hosts took the lead seven minutes later, as Mesut Özil found an unmarked Götze and the FC Bayern München man slotted in a left-footed effort from ten metres. Eduardo Vargas later struck the woodwork for Chile but Germany held on despite failing to reach top gear.

After opening strongly, the South American FIFA World Cup hopefuls did not cower after conceding, and Vidal went close again in the 27th minute before Felipe Gutiérrez followed suit moments later. Götze curled wide with his right boot as he looked for a second, while Charles Aránguiz crashed an attempt into Manuel Neuer's side netting with the first half's final chance.

Germany coach Joachim Löw became frustrated as his side failed to control the early stages of the second period, with the visitors continuing to pose a threat on the break. They nearly got the equaliser as Vargas clipped the underside of Neuer's crossbar with a fierce shot on the hour mark. The Chileans remained the more active team yet were unable to find the breakthrough – leaving Germany with plenty to ponder before the trip to Brazil.