Team Germany is almost ready to travel to France. “Die Mannschaft” is without any doubt one of the favourites this Euro 2016. First of all there is no need to discuss that the current World-Cup-Winner is also a possible Euro-Winner, even if their Sunday 3-1 loss in Augsburg to Slovakia makes one a bit uneasy. Second of all we just have to look at the squad. Even with some problems caused by injuries, Germany still is one of the best teams in Europe.
There are always matters of discussion and it is commonly known that before a tournament everybody wants to participate in “who should play for Germany and who should rather stay at home”. Joachim Löw nominated three young lads who really – after a brilliant season – deserved to breath air into “Die Mannschaft”. And even if Julian Weigl (Borussia Dortmund), Joshua Kimmich (FC Bayern München) or Julian Brandt (Bayer Leverkusen) will be send home, it is a confirmation and reward of their performance this season.
Joshua Kimmich (Bayern München) – 1.422 minutes Bundesliga/374 minutes DFB-Pokal/631 minutes Champions League
Kimmich is a flexible talent. He is one of the few expectations of Bayern’s talents and was nominated regularly. Pep Guardiola seemed to like him. He can play as central defender or central midfielder. Although the 21 year-old prefers to be nominated as “6” or “8” – central midflied – Kimmich made his best matches as substitute for Jerome Boateng in central defence. He used his chance and advanced to one of the most important pillars during the partly successful spring-matches against Juventus Turin, Atletico Madrid or in Bundesliga action. There is no doubt that this young lad has possibilities to become part of the future core of the FC-Bayern-line-up.
Forecast – Kimmich will be part of “Die Mannschaft”. He plays for Bayern and also is a flexible player. Jogi Löw likes this.
Julian Weigl (Borussia Dortmund) – 2248 minutes Bundesliga/408 minutes DFB-Pokal/944 minutes Europa League
Weigl, 20, can, without any doubt, be described as the “new face” of Borussia Dortmund. In summer 2015 he avoided relegation as 1860 München-captain. A few months later he acted as most important midfielder in Borussia Dortmund line-up. He is – compared to Brandt or Kimmich – a constant starting player and even broke a record this season. Against 1. FC Köln Weigl only played 83 minutes but touched the ball 214 times – it is a new Bundesliga-Record. He, together with Gonzalo Castro, made sure that Ilkay Gündogan had no chance in Dortmund line-up the last matches. He also is number one name when it comes to legit successor of Gündogan, who may leave for Manchester City if injury concerns don’t scare off bidders. Weigl plays central midfield (“6”) and directly showed his potential in first season.
Forecast – although Weigl is the one who – if you follow the so-called principle of performance – deserved it the most, I guess that Jogi Löw will not nominate him for “Die Mannschaft”. He had a long season and only can be used as central midfield, which could be his disadvantage compared to Kimmich.
Julian Brandt (Bayer Leverkusen) – 1618 minutes Bundesliga/132 minutes DFB Pokal/397 Champions League (Europa League)
Unlike Weigl and Kimmich, Julian Brandt plays as winger, outside left (right) or central defence. He scored ten goals this season (nine Bundesliga/one DFB-Pokal) and was one of the positive surprises in Leverkusen-squad. He is a dynamic winger who showed his potential, but never really was a starting player. Just turned 20 in early May, he nevertheless is a winger who can make the difference.
Forecast – Julian Brandt will be part of “Die Mannschaft”. But not this year. In contrast to Germany’s defence, the offensive has no big injurie-problems. Brandt has no chance against Müller, Özil, Reus or Götze.
Kimnich was in the starting XI for Löw Sunday against Slovakia, while Brandt and Weigl were used as substitutes.
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