Gareth Southgate hands England debut to Michael Keane

"God or someone up there gifted me with this left foot, and I've always been able to rely on it", Podolski told Germany football federation, DFB's website.

"I don't know how much he paid for the England goalkeeper to let it in", World Cup-winning teammate Thomas Mueller joked.

Podolski, 31, will make his 130th and final appearance by wearing the captain's armband against Gareth Southgate's Three Lions in Dortmund.

After his winning goal lit up an otherwise boring friendly on 69 minutes, Podolski came off to more thunderous applause with six minutes to go.

"Of course, I hope so, because he is one of the greatest in England", he said. "We played well today, especially first half".

"I take a lot of encouragement from that despite the result", said Southgate. The new tactical system worked really well, there were individual performances throughout the team that were at a high level.

Podolski was making his 130th and final appearance for Germany and marked an emotional friendly with his 49th goal, a belter from 25 yards to seal a 1-0 win in the latest instalment of this storied fixture.

West Bromwich Albion's Jake Livermore came in for injured Jordan Henderson while Leicester's Jamie Vardy took Harry Kane's place up front.

A number of young players such as Nathan Redmond, James Ward-Prowse and Michael Keane received valuable minutes, on a night where England fans were given a glimpse into the future.

A fourth, Sami Khedira, dropped out hours before kick-off with a swollen ankle.

As for Germany, manager Joachim Low gives a debut to striker Timo Werner, who has impressed for RB Leipzig this season, while Manchester City winger Leroy Sane also features in attack. Germany 'keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen was relieved to see the Liverpool midfielder's effort crash back off the far post.

England controlled the proceedings on the pitch in the first half but the visitors were unable to convert promising opportunities against Germans, who lacked in penetration.

But the best chance of the half fell to Tottenham's Dele Alli on 42 minutes but he drove the ball into Ter Stegen's midriff.

For England, the defeat was only their second in 17 away games, but Southgate will consider it a chance missed against a Germany side missing a number of stars including Manuel Neuer, Jerome Boateng, Mesut Ozil, Sami Khedira and Julian Draxler.

But, maybe, the national football team is starting to catch up with the rest of the world.

Furthermore, the FA revealed they are planning to host two showpiece Wembley friendly internationals in November provided England avoid the World Cup qualifier play-offs.

Latest News