Germany picked up only their second victory of 2020 as Gian-Luca Waldschmidt scored to help Joachim Low’s men to a 1-0 win over the Czech Republic.
Benfica forward Waldschmidt netted his second goal in five international appearances in Leipzig, where Low played a new-look team and was rewarded with a solid performance.
There were impressive debuts for wing-backs Ridle Baku and Philipp Max, while Florian Neuhaus dictated play from midfield in the absence of Joshua Kimmich as Robin Koch dealt ably with the visitors’ attacking threat.
Max was involved in the only goal after 13 minutes as he pounced when Neuhaus’ powerful 20-yard drive was parried by Jiri Pavlenka, crossing for Waldschmidt to turn the ball past the recovering goalkeeper from close range.
Ilkay Gundogan should have doubled Germany’s lead when a sweeping move ended in him firing disappointingly straight at Pavlenka, and Julian Brandt wasted a gift as he blazed wide after collecting a loose ball in the Czech Republic box.
Nadiem Amiri, on for the injured Jonas Hofmann, was smartly denied by Pavlenka twice in quick succession late in a first half laden with chances that ended with just one goal for the hosts.
Substitute Tomas Soucek headed narrowly wide as the Czech Republic improved after the interval, and Tomas Holes sent a powerful drive over the crossbar from 25 yards.
Neuhaus almost capped a fine performance with a memorable goal when he drove a fierce half-volley goalwards from the edge of the box, but his attempt hit the corner of post and bar and Low’s men had to settle for a modest margin of victory, seeing out a slightly nervy finish.