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Germany and Romania share spoils in EURO 2000 Group A

Germany 1-1 Romania
The holders made an abject start to their UEFA EURO 2000 campaign, coming from behind to draw.

Viorel Moldovan rejoices after giving Romania the lead
Viorel Moldovan rejoices after giving Romania the lead ©Getty Images

Holders Germany kicked off their UEFA European Championship defence in unconvincing style, forced to come from behind to earn a draw in a game offering a memorable contrast in styles.

Romania's bright start was rewarded on five minutes when they capitalised on a slip by Thomas Linke's failure to cut out a long ball. Adrian Ilie pounced, feeding Viorel Moldovan with a cute pass across the box that was dutifully turned in. Mehmet Scholl's stunning strike levelled matters before the half-hour, but while Germany came closest to a winner when Oliver Bierhoff struck the post, Romania could also have taken the Group A spoils.

EURO 2000: All you need to know

Germany went into a game deafened by talk of their being a declining force, and their bid to silence their detractors could not have got off to a worse start. Yet there was scant opportunity to come to terms with Moldovan's goal – there was more defending to do. Gheorghe Hagi was at the heart of it, shaking off a groin problem to provide his unique experience and cunning.

Highlights: Best goals of EURO 2000
Highlights: Best goals of EURO 2000

The playmaker's sorcery was at the heart of two openings for Moldovan, both directed over, but after a knock his influence waned and the pattern of the game changed. Germany began to retain possession and get men forward. Bierhoff forced a fine reflex save from Bogdan Stelea but the keeper was taken by complete surprise four minutes later when Scholl ended a bout of patient passing with a fine swerving shot.

Erich Ribbeck replaced Linke at half-time with Marko Rehmer, and the newcomer was still trying to judge the pace of the game when he hesitated over a long ball and allowed Moldovan a clear sight of goal; Oliver Kahn turned his shot wide. Bierhoff then sent a header against a post before Germany had a remarkable double let-off. Under pressure from Ilie, Kahn failed to gather a lofted ball but first with his left foot, then his right, Moldovan failed to make it count.

EURO 2000: Team of the Tournament


Lineups

Romania's Viorel Moldovan  vies with Germany's Jens Nowotny
Romania's Viorel Moldovan vies with Germany's Jens NowotnyGetty Images

Germany: Kahn; Matthäus (Deisler 78), Linke (Rehmer 46), Nowotny, Babbel, Ziege; Jeremies, Scholl, Häßler (Hamann 73); Bierhoff (c), Rink
Substitutions: Lehmann, Butt, Bode, Kirsten, Ballack, Wosz, Jancker, Ramelow
Coach: Erich Ribbeck

Romania: Stelea; Popescu, Petrescu (Contra 69), Ciobotariu, Filipescu; Chivu, Munteanu, Gâlcă, Hagi (c) (Mutu 73); Moldovan (Lupescu 85), Ilie
Substitutions: Lobont, Prunea, Petre, Roșu, Belodedici. Ganea, Lincar, Hîldan
Coach: Emerich Jenei

Referee: Kim Milton Nielsen (Denmark)

Man of the Match: Mehmet Scholl (Germany)