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Scotland 2-3 Germany

Joachim Low will be happy with his sides performance on Monday night
Joachim Low will be happy with his sides performance on Monday night
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Scotland's hopes of automatic qualification to Euro 2016 ended as they crashed to a narrow 3-2 defeat against Germany at Hampden Park.

Germany dominated from the first whistle as Scotland looked to pack their defence and frustrate the visitors in the opening period.

Gordon Strachan's side went into the Group D match needing to avoid defeat against the world champions having slipped to a disappointing 1-0 defeat in Georgia on Friday night.

However, despite twice clawing their way back into the match when a Mats Hummels own goal and James McArthur effort cancelled out a Thomas Muller brace respectively, Ilkay Gundogan scored the winning goal for Joachim Low's side in the second half.

The Germans remain a point clear at the top of the group, despite Poland's 8-1 battering of Gibraltar.

The Republic of Ireland's 1-0 win against Georgia in Dublin leaves them four points clear of the Scots in third position which means Strachan's side will have to win their two remaining games and hope the Irish slip up to snatch that play-off spot from Martin O'Neill's men in the battle to reach France next summer.

Germany dominated from the first whistle as Scotland looked to pack their defence and frustrate the visitors in the opening period.

However that strategy failed to pay-off with Germany going forward to take the lead in the 18th minute.

McArthur's failure to intercept a pass to Muller allowed the striker the time to advance towards the area before his tame strike took a meaty deflection off Russell Martin which took the ball past David Marshall and into the bottom corner of the net.

Scotland did get the rub of the green when they equalised 10 minutes later as Manuel Neuer parried a Shaun Maloney free kick whipped in from the left into Hummels who could only watch as the ball rebounded off him and into the net.

Germany responded almost immediately to Scotland's equaliser and went back in front on 34 minutes.

Emre Can was set up by Mario Gotze down the right of the area and he fired in a shot which Marshall could only parry into the path of Muller who managed to divert his header into the net via the post with Charlie Mulgrew failing to keep the ball out on the line.

Gotze thought he had handed Germany a two-goal cushion on 39 minutes when he collected a Jonas Hector cross into the box before turning and firing a volley past Marshall from close range only to see the offside flag raised on the far side.

But it was Scotland who were back on level terms for a second time in the game two minutes before the interval.

Maloney's left-wing corner was only cleared to the edge of the area by Gundogan and McArthur's half-volley beat the dive of Neuer and floated into the net.

Another offside flag denied Gotze a goal on 50 minutes after rose in the area to divert his header over Marshall from a Bastian Schweinsteiger cross.

But Germany were not to be denied a third goal, which ultimately proved to be the winner, on 54 minutes.

Gundogan played the ball to Muller down the right of the area before continuing his run into the box to meet the striker's return pass and he then fired a low strike in off the post.

Scotland continued to battle for a third equaliser in the game, but in truth it was the Germans who went closer to adding to the scoreline.

On 62 minutes Schweinsteiger hit a pile-driver at goal from just outside the area but Marshall got enough of his body behind it to keep it out of his net.

And Marshall produced a better stop on 84 minutes to parry away a sweetly struck effort from Gundogan.

Leanne Daddia,

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