Friendlies: Buffon Equals Casillas Record, Spain Holds England


Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon kept a clean sheet as he played 45 minutes against world champions Germany on his European record-equalling 167th cap.

Buffon, 38, started the goalless draw in Milan to draw level with Spain keeper Iker Casillas’ tally.

He produced several routine saves before AC Milan teenager Gianluigi Donnarumma came on at the break.
Italy almost won the friendly in the final 10 minutes, but Andrea Belotti’s low shot came back off the post.

In another game, Gareth Southgate’s four-game tenure as England’s interim manager ended in disappointment as Spain scored twice in the closing moments to snatch a draw in the Wembley friendly.

England looked on course to further bolster Southgate’s claims to succeed Sam Allardyce as they impressed and took control through Adam Lallana’s early penalty, awarded when Spain keeper Pepe Reina hauled down Jamie Vardy.

The Leicester City striker’s fine diving header from Jordan Henderson’s cross just after the break gave England a lead they did not look like relinquishing as the clock ticked down.
Elsewhere, a much-changed France side were booed off the pitch after labouring to a 0-0 draw against Ivory Coast in Paris.

“We struggled, that’s not what I want to remember from 2016,” said Deschamps, whose side reached the final of Euro 2016 as hosts.

Russia, who will host the next World Cup in 2018, earned a late 1-0 friendly win against Romania as they played a historic international in Chechnya.

It was the first international Russia had played in the region, which experienced two devastating wars in the 1990s when government forces battled Islamist insurgents.

Substitute Magomed Ozdoev, who was born in the Chechen capital Grozny, scored the only goal three minutes into stoppage time.

In other matches, Iceland won 2-0 in Malta, Sweden beat Hungary and Ukraine saw off Serbia by the same scoreline.