Germany 0-0 France
6 September 2018
Allianz Arena, Munich
FIFA and UFWC World Champions France were held to a goalless draw by Germany in a match of few chances, which the Germans slightly shaded. This was the first match for both side in the new UEFA Nations League, involving all 55 UEFA member associations of UEFA, with the league phase running from September to November 2018 and the finals taking place in June 2019.
France were without World Cup-lifting captain and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris due to injury. Fellow goalkeeper Steve Mandanda was also injured. Alphonse Areola made his international debut, and the PSG keeper produced a man of the match display. But it was Germany keeper Manuel Neuer who was tested during a lacklustre first half, saving from an Olivier Giroud header and a Kylian Mbappe free kick.
Germany were without Mesut Ozil, following his retirement from international football amid his allegations of racism. But the Germans had the better of the second half, and came closest to scoring. France’s Areola made a good stop from Marco Reus, then made a trio of brilliant saves from Mats Hummels (twice) and Thomas Muller as Germany enjoyed an impressive ten minutes of play. But otherwise the game was poor. The final score was 0-0.
The result means France remain undisputed unofficial and official champions, and stay in 10th place in the all-time UFWC rankings.
The next UFWC title match is on Sunday, 9 September, when France take on the Netherlands at the Stade de France in another Nations League match. Kick-off time is 20:45 (19:45 UK). The Netherlands are one of the most successful teams in UFWC history, and are 4th in the all-time rankings. They last won a title match in 2014.
New for 2018,the latest edition of the official UFWC book, Unofficial Football World Champions.
This is the fourth edition of the book that has been published in every World Cup year since 2006. Expanded and updated to include new matches, teams, players and statistics, it’s a complete guide to the UFWC, including all 936 title matches played since 1872, and all 48 unofficial football world champions.
It’s available exclusively from Amazon stores worldwide, priced at £9.99 or $13.95 – click here.