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Everything goes well for Bleus
by Paul Kennedy, February 29th, 2012 11:40PM

TAGS:  european championship, france, germany


[GERMANY-FRANCE] Such is the damage that was done by its 2010 World Cup campaign that the French national team barely draws more than a yawn from the French soccer public, but the Bleus' unbeaten streak now stands at 18 games following its 2-1 win over Germany in Bremen on Wednesday.

Olivier Giroud scored one goal and set up substitute Florent Malouda the second as France handed Germany its first loss in almost a year.

Blanc said he was pleased with the French win over Germany, which follows victories over England and Brazil in friendlies.

"This was one of our better performances since I took charge," said Blanc, who took over after France's quick exit from the 2010 World Cup. "From our point of view, everything went well, I was pleased with the way we pushed forward and, of course, I'm very pleased with the win."

To be sure, Germany was missing a number of key players -- defenders Philipp Lahm and Per Mertesacker and Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mario Goetze and Lukas Podolski -- but Coach Joachim Loew was making no excuses.

"You have to be annoyed when you lose, but I was more concerned about the manner in which we lost," said Loew. "We didn't find our game and France were clearly better than us."

Germany is supposed to have an unlimited supply of young talent, but midfielders Marco Reus, 22, and Andre Schuerrle, 21, were no factor in the game. Schuerrle left the game with a suspected broken nose.

Feb. 29 in Bremen
Germany 1 France 2. Goals: Cacau 90+1; Giroud 21, Malouda 69.
Germany -- Wiese, Boateng, Hummels, Badstuber (Hoewedes, 46), Argo, Khedira (Bender, 70), Kroos, Reus (Cacau, 70), Ozil, Schuerrle (Mueller, 45), Klose (Gomez, 46).
France -- Lloris, Abidal, Debuchy, Mexes, Rami, Cabaye (A.Diarra, 62), M'Vila (Malouda, 62), Nasri, Giroud (Saha, 76), Ribery (Menez, 46), Valbuena (Amalfitano, 68).
Referee: Paolo Tagliavento (Italy)

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