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France national football team
Friendlies 1
Mar 23, 2024 at 8pm UK
Parc Olympique Lyonnais
Germany national football team

France
0 - 2
Germany


Mbappe (68'), Rabiot (73')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Wirtz (1'), Havertz (49')
Nagelsmann (60'), Andrich (68')

Germany's Julian Nagelsmann: 'Kai Havertz to start up front against France'

Nagelsmann: 'Havertz to start up front against France'
© Reuters
Germany head coach Julian Nagelsmann confirms that Arsenal's Kai Havertz will start as a striker in Saturday's friendly against France at the Groupama Stadium in Lyon.

Germany head coach Julian Nagelsmann has confirmed that Arsenal's Kai Havertz will start as a striker in Saturday's friendly against France at the Groupama Stadium in Lyon.

The versatile 24-year-old was surprisingly used as a left-back in November last year when Die Mannschaft suffered a 3-2 home defeat to Turkey.

Since the turn of the year, Havertz has been in fine for Arsenal, scoring four goals and providing two assists in his last six games while operating in either midfield or attack.

Nagelsmann believes that Havertz - a £65m summer signing from Chelsea - has "developed very well" under Gunners boss Mikel Arteta this season and has talked up his qualities ahead of Saturday's clash with France.

Speaking at a press conference on Friday, as quoted by @iMiaSanMia on 'X', Nagelsmann said: "He has developed very well, he has a lot of recognition from the coach [Arteta] and the club [Arsenal].

Germany's Kai Havertz pictured on March 25, 2023© Reuters

"I think very highly of him as a player and as a person. He will start against France up front, which he did six times for Arsenal.

"He has good deep runs and very good pace. We are happy that we have a striker behind him in Fulle (Niclas Fullkrug), who brings a different profile. Deniz [Undav] can also play in other positions. It's good that not every player has the same profile".

While Havertz will start up front, Nagelsmann has revealed that Stuttgart's Maximilian Mittelstadt will be handed his first international cap at left-back.

One player who will not be involved on Saturday is Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who sustained a muscle tear in his left thigh during training earlier this week.

However, Nagelsmann has confirmed that the 37-year-old will be his number-one shot-stopper for Euro 2024, held on German soil this summer.

Bayern Munich's Manuel Neuer during the match on October 28, 2023© Reuters

"We have made the decision," said Nagelsmann. "Unfortunately Manu got injured but it's just a strain and he will only be out for ten days, so I won't be changing my decision.

"He has played very well for a long time now, in the Champions League and the Bundesliga. It's about giving the player clarity. It's the same with all the players I'm planning with for the first 13 positions.

"But I also said in a conversation with [Marc-Andre ter Stegen] that I'm happy we have two world-class goalkeepers. I explained to him that it was important he was there for the two games. An injury can happen anytime for both of them. But nothing changes in the decision."

Germany will endeavour to end a three-man winless streak when they take on a France side whom they beat 2-1 in a home friendly in September last year.

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Game History

How you voted: France vs Germany

France
65.4%
Draw
15.6%
Germany
19.0%
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