By Peter Rutherford
RIO DE JANEIRO, July 4 (Reuters) - Germany reached their fourth consecutive World Cup semi-final after defender Mats Hummels' first-half header gave the three-time winners a 1-0 victory over France at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana on Friday.
Centre back Hummels, who scored in Germany's first group game but missed the last 16 win over Algeria due to illness, beat Raphael Varane to a Toni Kroos free kick and glanced a header past French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in the 13th minute.
Manuel Neuer made a terrific save from Mathieu Valbuena 10 minutes before halftime to preserve Germany's lead then blocked Blaise Matuidi's powerful effort midway through the second half as France pressed for the equaliser.
Germany next face either hosts Brazil or Colombia for a place in the World Cup final. The South American rivals play later on Friday in Fortaleza.