Football round-up: Clint Dempsey scores twice as US edge Germany

Brazil draw against England in the other high-profile international friendly of the day.

Clint Dempsey was unhappy even in victory as the US conceded two late goals against Germany. Nicholas Kamm / AFP
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Clint Dempsey, the US captain, scored two goals in the second half and the Americans held off a late comeback on Sunday for a 4-3 victory over second-ranked Germany in an international football friendly.

Tottenham striker Dempsey netted his 34th and 35th international goals in his 96th appearance for the USA, moving past Eric Wynalda into second on the all-time US scoring list, 14 shy of Landon Donovan's record.

"Having a player like Clint Dempsey on your team is just a privlege," said US coach Jurgen Klinsmann.

"This is one of the best players in US history. He has the hunger and the drive. He sends a message to his own players and also to the opponents."

Former German star Klinsmann guided the Americans against a German side he managed in the 2006 World Cup, a team now guided by his former assistant, Joachim Loew.

Dempsey's brace gave the Americans a dream 4-1 lead in the US Soccer Federation's centennial celebration match just four days after they struggled in a 4-2 loss to Belgium.

"The game with Belgium was simply too embarassing to them," Loew said. "The US team approached the game with passion and commitment. I was not surprised with the quality of the US team."

A German side missing many of its top stars battled back on late goals by Max Kruse and Julain Draxler, but could not net the equalizer, falling to 6-3 against the Americans, their first loss to a US side since falling 2-0 at the 1999 Confederations Cup in Mexico.

German substitute Heiko Westermann's header in the 51st minute off a corner kick from Kruse pulled the visitors within 2-1.

But the Americans answered in the 60th minute, Jozy Altidore playing the ball to his right into the penalty area and Dempsey taking it on one bounce and hammering a shot into the back of the net.

Dempsey struck again four minutes later, firing a left-footed rocket from just beyond the penalty area for a 4-1 US lead.

Kruse pulled one back for the Germans in the 79th minute and Draxler trimmed the margin to 4-3 in the 81st, taking the rebound off a Sydney Sam shot that US goalkeeper Tim Howard sprawled to deflect and tapping the ball unchallenged into the goal.

But the US stiffened at the finish to preserve the victory.

"We still have to hold ourselves to a higher standard and not allow those two late goals," Dempsey said.

"We're not happy with the number of goals we have allowed in the last two games. At the same time, we take a lot of confidence from beating a very good team."

German defender Per Mertesacker missed a golden chance from the heart of the penalty area in the 10th minute while one-on-one with Howard, pushing his shot just wide of the goal to the right of the Everton netminder.

Altidore gave the Americans the lead in the 13th minute, blasting a cross from Graham Zuzi with a left-footed volley into the back of the net from just inside the penalty area.

A 16th-minute blunder by German goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen gave the US side a 2-0 edge. Ter Stegen misplayed a pass from defender Benedikt Howedes and the ball rolled off his foot and across the goal line.

In the 24th minute, German captain Miroslav Klose took a breakaway pass and flicked a right-footed shot past a helpless Howard, but the Lazio striker was offside on the play, nullifying the effort as Germany trailed 2-0 at half-time.

Brazil draw against England

Five-times world champions Brazil extended their unimpressive run of results on Sunday when they scrambled a 2-2 draw with England in a friendly at the rebuilt and newly re-opened Maracana.

The 2014 World Cup hosts produced probably their best 45 minutes since Luiz Felipe Scolari took over as coach last November as they pulled England apart in the first half but failed to score.

The second half was a different story and they needed an 82nd minute equaliser from midfielder Paulinho to rescue them, three minutes after Wayne Rooney gave England a shock lead on their first visit to Brazil since their famous win at the old version of the stadium in 1984.

Fred had put Brazil ahead in the 57th minute and teenage substitute Alex Olade-Chamberlain pulled England back into the game with a superb goal only five minutes after coming on.

Brazil, whose last match at the old Maracana was a goalless draw against Colombia in a World Cup qualifier in 2008, have drawn four of their six games since 2002 World Cup winner Scolari returned for a second stint.

Their only win was against Bolivia and their only defeat against England at Wembley in February.

"In the first half, we were very excellent but the second half was what I don't like and don't want. Our team was very open, giving our opponents the chance to dominate the game, play and score their goals," Scolari told reporters.

With Brazil's preparations for next year's tournament plagued by delays and political rows, attention was focused as much on the venue as the match itself.

England's visit marked the end of a long drawn-out, US$500 million (Dh1.8 billion) programme to modernise the arena which will host seven matches at the 2014 World Cup, including the final.

Although the pitch was in good condition, the atmosphere was hugely disappointing, with large parts of the game watched in near silence, a far cry from the passionate crowds at big domestic games.

Alonso overlooked by Spain

Xabi Alonso, the Real Madrid midfielder, was left out of Spain's squad for the Confederations Cup in Brazil this month when Vicente del Bosque cut his list to 23 on Sunday.

The 31 year old has been an integral part of the Spain team who won Euros 2008 and 2012, and the World Cup in 2010, but he has been struggling with a groin problem for the last few weeks of the Spanish Primera Liga season.

Allegri to stay on Milan manager

Silvio Berlusconi, the AC Milan president, has ended weeks of speculation by agreeing that Massimiliano Allegri will stay on as manager.

Milan's hardcore supporters, known as Ultras, were among those who had wanted the phlegmatic coach to keep his job after leading a young and rebuilt Milan team to third place in Italian Serie A this season.

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