Rio de Janeiro • Mats Hummels headed in a free kick to give Germany a 1-0 lead over France in an all-European World Cup quarterfinal match on Friday.
The center back, recalled to the Germany team after a bout of flu, outmuscled his marker, Raphael Varane, to get to an inswinging free kick by Toni Kroos and glanced a header in off the crossbar in the 13th minute.
France started nervously — particularly at the back — but looked dangerous with balls over Germany’s high line in defense.
Mathieu Valbuena had France’s best chance, a hooked left-foot volley that was parried away by goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. Karim Benzema pounced on the rebound but his close-range effort was blocked. The French striker also shot straight at Neuer late in the half.
The more experienced German lineup, seeking to reach the semifinals for a fourth straight World Cup, had a more robust appearance in muggy conditions at Maracana stadium after making a slew of changes following a sloppy 2-1 second-round win over Algeria.
Veteran striker Miroslav Klose started up front for Germany but had no clear-cut opportunity to score a record-setting 16th goal at a World Cup.
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