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Mesut Oezil, Marco Reus shine in Germany win over Austria in World Cup qualifiers

Associated Press
Sep 12, 2012 at 09:20am IST

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Vienna: Marco Reus scored his third international goal and Mesut Oezil added a penalty Tuesday to help Germany beat Austria 2-1 in a 2014 World Cup qualifier.

Germany looked vulnerable in defense and narrowly avoided a second Austrian goal several times.

"We have got six points from two matches, the start is good," Germany captain Philipp Lahm said. "But we can't be satisfied with our game, especially early in the match and at the end."

Oezil, Reus shine in Germany win over Austria

The Germans won 2-1 in a closely contested encounter in Vienna.

Coming from the left wing, Reus dribbled past Austria defenders Gyorgy Garics and Emanuel Pogatetz and beat keeper Robert Almer at the near post in the closing minute of the first half.

Oezil doubled Germany's lead in the 52nd from the penalty spot after Thomas Mueller was pushed down by Austria midfielder Veli Kavlak.

Zlatko Junuzovic reduced Austria's deficit five minutes later, converting a cross by Marko Arnautovic.

Austria got several chances for a late equalizer but goalkeeper Manuel Neuer prevented Joachim Loew's team from dropping points in the sold-out Ernst Happel Stadium.

Guido Burgstaller, who failed to dribble past Neuer, and Arnautovic, who shot wide in front of an empty goal, came closest to making it 2-2.

Germany remained atop Group C with six points from two games after defeating Faeroe Islands four days ago.

"I am only partly satisfied with this match," Loew said. "We've always had our problems when playing in Austria. They got some great chances, but they all resulted from our mistakes."

Germany missed Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger, who was left out of the squad by Loew after an injury-plagued season, and had many loose passes in midfield.

Austria looked fresher and sharper in the first half. In the fourth minute, striker Martin Harnik was set up by Julian Baumgartlinger but saw his shot blocked by Holger Badstuber. Minutes later, Harnik's effort from 20 meter went just wide.

Germany wasted possession too often to create danger in attack. Thomas Mueller and Toni Kroos were denied success by Austria keeper Robert Almer before Reus finally put the European Championship semifinalists in front.

"Germany showed it is a world-class team," Austria coach Marcel Koller said. "Hardly any chances, but scoring twice. We played very well but are left with no points. We can't be happy."

Austria had nine players from German Bundesliga clubs in their starting lineup, even one more than Germany themselves, and fielded no players from their own domestic league.

Austria, who were unbeaten in four matches so far this year, have not won against Germany since a friendly in 1986 and not in an official game since the 1978 World Cup.

In the same group, Sweden defeated Kazakhstan 2-0.

World Cup qualifying resumes on Oct. 12 when Austria travel to Kazakhstan and Germany to Ireland.

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