October 19, 2017

Germany 6 –2 Austria – Germany secure qualification in style

Germany’s attacking prowess was on full display in Gelsenkirchen with a convincing 6-2 win over neighbors Austria.  An Özil brace, and a goal each from Klose, Podolski and the two substitutes Schürrle and Götze ensured qualification for next year’s EURO championship in Poland and the Ukraine.

Coach Jogi Löw made three changes from the side that impressively beat Brazil 3-2 last month.  Local player and Schalke captain Höwedes replaced Träsch at right back while first team regulars Özil and Klose returned to the starting line-up, replacing Götze and the injured Gomez respectively.  He kept his preferred 4-2-3-1 formation with a slight adjustment to its’ shape. With Kroos playing in central midfield instead of Khedira, it effectively becomes a 4-1-4-1 in practice given Kroos’s more advanced positioning.  It worked well against Brazil and Löw hoped it would again against Austria.

Austria coach Dietmar Constantini surprisingly lined up with what most closely resembled a 4-4-2.  He had used the formation before but against an attacking minded side like Germany away from home it was a risky proposition. Seven Bundesliga players lined up for Austria including Hannover’s latest signing, Daniel Royer.  Harnik and Arnautovic up front were supposed to be a mobile interchanging striker pair, both having played or playing out wide as well as in the center for their clubs.

Formations and key movement

The Match

As is typical for Germany, they started the match with an intense tempo to try and unsettle their opponents early.  Löw encourages this aggression to capitalize on the pace and the energy of players like Müller, Podolski and Özil and to get an early goal.  The strategy worked and Germany took the lead just 8 minutes into the game.  Space opened up on the right and Schweinsteiger found time to send a cross into the box.  Pogatetz’s clearance fell to the feet of Özil who lightly tapped the ball goal bound.  The shot took a slight deflection off Klose and the ball landed in the lower left corner. 1-0!   The pressure on Austria increased after the goal and Constantini’s men failed to effectively keep possession, always giving up the ball in midfield.  Baumgartlinger and Alaba were especially under heavy pressure from Schweinsteiger, Kroos and Özil who always looked to collect the ball in the middle.

The more Austria gave up possession, the more fluid Germany became.  Özil and Klose combined well several times and dislodged Austria’s defense throughout the first half. Klose’s movement and ability to read the game was a refreshing change from the usual static play of Gomez.  The duo’s chemistry was effectively running the show for Germany and on 23 minutes it finally resulted in a goal.  Özil picked up the ball in the middle of the pitch, laid it off to Klose who cleverly flicked it back to the playmaker who rounded Gratzei to double the lead. 2-0!   Müller meanwhile kept Fuchs busy all game long on the right, always pinning him back and rarely allowing the fullback to get forward and getting the best of him at every turn.  Müller remained out wide for much of the first half but found more space in the middle as the game progressed.   A third goal seemed inevitable and give minutes after the second goal Badstuber’s run up the pitch set up Podolski for the third. 3-0!  Gratzei will be criticized for not stopping the shotb ut the fact that a center back had the freedom to run the length of the pitch to set up a goal was more telling of Austria’s issues in midfield.

Almost completely against the run of play, Austria pulled a goal back.  Not completely surprising though considering that Germany have too often displayed moments of complacency when in control of a match or in the lead.  This time Fuchs switched the ball to Klein on the right three minutes before time.  The right back was given all the time and space in the world by Lahm to place his cross.  The oncoming Arnautovic beat Badstuber in the air to head the ball past Neuer. 3-1!

Löw was furious going into half time but his side was rarely troubled by Austria and the second half continued in the same vein as the first.  The more offensive minded Boateng replaced Höwedes at the break to add further pressure down the right, the side that Germany had arguably been more threatening on.  Their fourth goal came on a trademark counter attack.  An Austria corner kick was cleared.  The clever Müller read the trajectory of the clearance and flicked the ball with his head into the path of the onrushing Özil who outran Fuchs and slipped the ball under Gratzei. 4-1!  Once again though Germany let their guard down though and Austria pulled another goal back four minutes later.  Harnik picked up the ball in front of Germany’s box, played it to Arnautovic who cleverly flicked it over the heads of both German center backs and blasted it past Neuer.  It was a combination of complacency and a lack of communication in the back.  Hummels came out to intercept the ball and instead of staying back and tracking Harnik’s run, Badstuber stepped out of the back as well, giving Harnik all the space to score. 4-2!

Germay did not let the goal deter them though and continued their direct high tempo game.  The introduction of Boateng added another element of attack and the right back carved out two chances for himself in the next five minutes.  The game was a lot more open now and Austria in particular adjusted some of their play.  Alaba took the initiative and played a more offensive role with Arnautovic switching over the to the left side to try and exploit the space left by Boateng’s forward runs.  To their credit, Austria did well to create chances (7 shots by then) despite Germany having 60% possession with the trio of Harnik, Alaba and Arnautovic looking good going forward.  Unfortunately for them, they lacked service and had no answer to Germany’s options off the bench.

Rather than protecting the lead, Löw brought on two additional attackers.  Schürrle replaced Podolski and Götze came on for Kroos.  Going into this game, there were talks over who would start on the left and whether it was time for Löw to drop Podolski in favor of the more in form Schürrle.  The Leverkusen attacker had convinced in his previous games for the National Team and seemed a better fit for Germany’s style of play.  Sure enough, Schürrle scored 10 minutes after being brought on.  Müller cut into the center and played a one-two with Klose.  Austria could not clear the ball and it fell to the feet of Schürrle who neatly scored his 4th goal in 7 appearances for Germany. 5-2!  Germany’s quality in depth became even more frighteningly obvious when Götze added a sixth a minute from time.  Müller was the playmaker yet again when he picked up the ball on he right and spotted Götze’s run into the box.  He sent in a precise cross to Götze whose great run was outdone only by a great finish, a delicately weighed and accurately placed volley to see out the game. 6-2!

  Conclusion and what to expect against Poland

Löw sung the praises of his team after the match and rightfully so.  The plethora of young talent was visible for all to see and the only concern for Löw now is who to pick going forward.  Schürrle scored his third goal off the bench and his record is quite amazing considering his age and the limited playing time given so far.  It will be difficult for Podolski to maintain his place as a starter now considering Schürrle’s consistent performances and form.  The team also appears more fluid and dangerous with him on the pitch.  The same can be said about Götze but he will likely remain a backup for Özil.  Either way, Löw is spoiled for choice and the biggest task for him is to optimize the output and talent of his squad.  Defensively Löw also admitted that goals are inevitable with the offensive orientation of the team but against better sides it could prove more costly unless addressed.  There remain questions about Badstuber as Hummels’s partner but with the return of Mertesacker and the continuous improvement of Boateng and Höwedes there exist plenty of alternatives.

With EURO qualification wrapped up Löw said he will experiment against Poland. meaning that certain players will be rested and others given a chance to start.  Götze will most likely start in place of Özil while Schürrle may finally get a chance to play from the beginning instead of Podolski.  Mertesacker could also make his long awaited return in place of either Hummels or Badstuber while Träsch may slot in at right back again.  It is unlike Löw to make too many wholesale changes though and we could see some regulars start against Poland but for the most part it will provide another chance to experiment ahead of next summer’s tournament.

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Cristian Nyari

Cristian is a football writer and analyst living in New York City, fascinated with the history and study of the beautiful game and all it entails. Follow Cristian on twitter @Cnyari

36 Comments

  1. I don’t even think Badstuber is ahead of him in passing. The kinds of precision on his long passes are just very rare for a defender and I rarely see Badstuber doing that, he’s way too timid at times. Badstuber is a good passer and that is probably his biggest strength but he lacks the creativity and incisiveness in them that Hummels does.

  2. Mou normally does not let him play the 90 minutes because of that. The most games – especially the important ones – Özil is the first one he takes out of the game.

  3. Dude, KP Boateng already played for Ghana, FYI. The match between us and Ghana in WC2010 was a historic one, first time in history brothers face each other but in different team.

    However, I’m disagree with you comparing KP Boateng with Ballack & Effenberg. Yes, Ballack & Effenberg is quite hot-headed person, and quite brash when voicing their opinions. But still, both are great leaders and have strong charisma both in and out of the field. While KP Boateng is indiscipline, both are very different attributes.

  4. Showing the right attitude is very important in German youth football since Sammer took over and regarding poor teamwork Jogi seems to agree with him.

    There is also the story of Kevin-Prince Boateng, who during the Toulon tournament a couple years ago allegedly “inspired” his teammates to go out early to enjoy their summer break. Personally I think that is bull, as him and his buddy Patrick Ebert were easily the best German players there and aren’t smart enough to disguise themselves that way.

    With Jogi in charge Boateng would never have seen the DFB shirt despite his impressive performances in Italy tough. If that’s a good or a bad thing I’m not so sure of, Ballack, Effenberg, aso were certainly not easy to handle within a team context but they were also exceptional players and carried the German team for years.

  5. Imho Hummels is the much better player overall as well, and yes, Badstuber is only ahead of him when it comes to passing. With Jogi’s tactical style that’s a pretty big deal though.

    The quickest and most direct way to the opponent’s goal is a defining element of the “new” Germany and that’s the easier the more even the men at the back are comfortable on the ball. The other team leaving Per Mertesacker having it and doing absolutely nothing with it has actually been somewhat of a running gag on German TV at the World Cup.

  6. Agree with Cristian, Hummels is Pique version of Germany. And has a potential to eclipse Pique in few years from now.

    But still, I have one critic regarding Hummels performance against Austria, his passing was quite erratic IMO. It seems that he only focused in blocking whatever comes to him without aiming it properly to his teammates.

    If we compared Badstuber and Hummels, Badstuber a bit better than Hummels in passing and shooting aspect. But in other aspects, man marking, heading, pace, tackling, ball control, Hummels obviously better than Badstuber. Just my opinion though…

  7. I’m sorry but Badstuber better technique than Hummels? Hummels has the technique of a midfielder and is one of the most complete defenders in Europe. There is a huge gap between the two.

  8. i realise i havent mentioned mario: for now i think hes quite simply oezils direct replacement and its good that hes not being rushed. oezil always runs himself out and against certain opponents it will be a god send when goetze can come on with a fresh pair of legs and a fresh set of ideas.

  9. i agree with everything that blipp said really, i think the friendly against poland will decide alot…although i always think that and yet its only little things we come away with. partly because players like badstuber and podolski get far too much playing time. we still havent seen a hummels hoewedes cb partnership. and we still havent seen schuerrle oezil and mueller play for an extended amount of time. for me my current starters for 2012 would be:

    Neuer
    Boateng Hummels Hoewedes Lahm
    Schweini Khedira (if he was fit)
    Mueller Oezil Schuerrle
    Klose

    i also wish a younger striker could at least make the squad for 2012. petersen is the obvious choice but with the bench warming hes currently doing its unlikely hell prove his worth.

  10. Oh ok, thanks for the info even though I’m still surprised that I never heard this before. What a pity, considering he was instrumental when we manage to snatch Euro U-21 trophy, I remember vaguely that he was man of the match when we played against those overrated English side in group stage if I’m not mistaken. But still, I concur that teamwork and team harmony should be above everything.

  11. After playing a couple matches for the seniour team his attitude was severely lacking and a reliable source tells me there were some very unpleasant words between him and Dieter Eilts as well as Hotte Hrubesch.

    That’s enough for the Jogi crew to drop him, they are very focused on teamwork and Castro just isn’t that kind of player appearantly.

  12. “3. Gonzalo Castro has been expelled from the German national team for his behaviour in the U21 side. With Jogi as head coach he won’t play another match for the seniour side, ever.” I’m quite surprised to read this, after all, I’ve been Germany fans since mid 1990 era. Did I miss something regarding Gonzalo Castro case?

  13. I personally wouldn’t like to see a totally young and inexperienced (at Nationalmannschaft level) central defense at the upcoming tournament. There is sufficient time for Höwedes, Badstuber, Boateng? to climb up the ladder.
    Mertesacker next to the best Bundesliga centre-back of 2010/11, who will have the opportunity to play Champions League football this season is the best choice for me. I think Löw sees it in the same way, he was very happy about the move to Arsenal.
    Of course if Mertesacker has difficulty making himself with a place, then it would be a different szenario. But seeing at the salary Wenger offered and the time they have been chasing him, it would be a surprise.
    Per has 3 tournament with the Nationalmannschaft at his back being a first eleven player, his experience is very valuable. His flaws in playing the ball from the back are known but for that you have Lahm, Hummels, Schweinsteiger, Kroos/Khedira in the team.
    I prefer Friedrich to Mertesacker but don’t think he will reach the level he had in 2010. At the World Cup he was really an inspiration to the young lads, this what I expect of Mertesacker.

    Kroos is a risky bet, no doubt. Fully agree that he still has a long way to go in the CM role. I just can’t stand this Khedira dude and believe that Toni will continue to develop this season with Heynckes as coach 😉

  14. Interesting line-up Patrick, but I disagree on a number of points.

    First up, I feel it is kind of premature to call up Mertesacker into the team, given that he did not really cover himself in glory this season just past or in previous performances for the National team. I remember very well how people were complaining about him being the weaker partner in the CB pairing with Friedrich, even in the World Cup where we did so well. Plus, he has made a big move career-wise and there is no guarantee that he will do well @ Arsenal.

    But then there is the bigger question, does he also fit into the kind of role that Loew now requests of his center-back. i.e, a modern-day passing center-half who is comfortable on the ball and likes to play it out the back?

    I think not.

    Secondly, I think the Brazil game might have slightly enamored people to a rose-tinted view of Kroos’ role in the team. I am a big fan of Toni, as my previous on this site will suggest, but he is simply defensively not mature enough to be playing that CM role against a side who will willingly press hard in midfield. Given time on the ball, Kroos is a magnificent distributor but he is often far too careless and casual with the ball, something that we can ill-afford in a big tournament. Personally, I think it comes about from his days as an attacking midfielder where he could be more risky with his passing, but generally, I feel those kind of lapses but just leave Germany with egg on their faces come the Euros.

    For me, Khedira has done little to lose his claim to that position. It might be bold to say so, but I think that while his attacking game needs work, he is exactly the kind of player who can hold things together and perform the box-to-box role that is required for that position.

  15. Andy Moeller by far never reached that position that his talent promised. He was from Frankfurt – but spent a lot time in Dortmund. Yes – he was a member of the national squad that won the World Cup and Euro 2006 – but he never became that exceptional player that his talent promised to get. The problem was his character. There is a little more to show in the German Wikipedia – the English one just shows the success not the shortcomings.

  16. Schuerrle is not left out – he is just not one of the starters but gets his time.

    The problem is that everybody expects all of the youngsters not to struggle looking at the role models Mueller and Oezil. But Oezil’s way did not run that smooth. He might still be so young but did his first league game in 2006 with 18. And had his first appearance in the national squad in 2009. A normal slow start even if it rocks now – the jump start Mueller did in one year from the amateurs to world cup awards was the absolute exception. And that he except from some weeks after the world cup stabilized and still is on the ladder up on that exceptional way without struggling is by far more astonishing (like Owen Hargreaves who combines a lot of the playing styles from the old stars he played with at Munich – Mueller seems to adopt a lot from Robben and Ribery).

    We should not take that guaranteed for all of them young ones.
    I would like to see their performance stabilized before I’d put them in a consistent starting position in the team in the national squad. It is not that putting than in it is essential for success. It is not a question of their talent but of their development. It is not so difficult to show your talent when everything works fine in your club. Dortmund and Mainz swam on a wave the recent year. It is a lot harder in the second year – for Schuerrle it means stabilizing, coping with a new team…

    Schuerrle is not a new Ribery or Robben – and no Mueller and Oezil. I see a good prospect when he works hard. Somebody that can become a very good Bundesliga player – no future star player. He is still to egoistic, more interested in his own show right now – has a lot more goals than assists even if his position is not forward. And Podolski is more important to the team than just the games show.

    I could understand it – given the situation that Goetze really rocks again this year – that Loew would play with Goetze, Oezil and Mueller as offensive midfield and wingers at the Euro (he sees Oezil and Goetze fighting for the same spot in the middle right now even im Goetze can play all three offensive positions) – without Podolski and with Gomez as striker and supported by Schweinsteiger and Khedira – and let them rotate their position depending on the situation in the game. Oezil might be better in going one against one on the right wing at tough opponents meanwhile Muellers opportunity to create rooms or get the defenders to do stupid stuff might get handy sometimes, maybe playing a 9 in some situations… and his new ability to make perfect serves for Gomez would add to the game when trying to break a wall of defenders or silencing the game.

    But for all I know – that team has so much potential.

  17. Some comments to points made by several posters here:

    1. Imho the difference between Germany with Khedira and Kroos is mostly down to their player types and the system is actually a 4-2-4 with both of them. Four defenders, four attackers, Schweinsteiger and Khedira/Kroos in the centre.

    2. Arne Friedrich used to be a right fullback, he developed into a centre back with age but started to play there for Hertha just about three years ago. Saying that Loew prefers converted centre backs at right back is incorrect, see Andreas Beck, etc. Friedrich played in the centre for Germany lately as well.

    3. Gonzalo Castro has been expelled from the German national team for his behaviour in the U21 side. With Jogi as head coach he won’t play another match for the seniour side, ever.

    4. Poldi is great for matches against individually or tactically weak sides. Goals are what matters ultimately and with his sweet left foot he provides them. Against possession oriented sides like Spain a player like Schürrle with his incredible work rate is the much better option though.

    5. I agree with Maldeika about yesterday’s formation being way too attacking for the final stage of a tournament. The new Germany is an extremely skillful side, but that has to be balanced with some steel. With some more focus Austria could probably have been kept out, there is a reason they haven’t qualified for either the European or the World Cup for several decades running though.

    6. Badstuber is the main passing outlet. He has way better technique than Hummels and unlike the Dortmund player doesn’t send several balls a match right into the foot of an opponent. Jogi is right about him, as he usually is.

    7. Mario Götze is not overhyped. Thiago Alcantera, Neymar, aso can’t hold a candle to him. Maybe Ganso can, but he really has to work on his speed. Probably born a few decades too late.

    8. Related to 4: Schürrle is not being left out. The guy is 20, hasn’t been a starter in pro football before last season and has six seniour caps. What more do you expect, Cristian ? Löw has been excellent in spotting rising stars actually. Müller, Götze, Reus, Schürrle, etc. were invited after just a few first division matches.

    That’s it for now I think, maybe I’ll come up with a couple more points tomorrow.

  18. andy möller was a great of german football who won everything there is
    worldcup and european cup with germany,
    bundesliga, club wordlcup and CL with dortmund,
    german cup with schalke and dortmund,
    UEFA-cup with juventus
    i think he is from frankfurt though.

    i guess you mean lars ricken ? he looked like the next big thing in the mid 90s but ultimately didn’t develop past the level of a decent/good bundesliga player.

  19. Maybe it is to balance Lahm’s attacks on the left? Hard to figure Löw out since he has an adequate option in Beck that he regularly ignores. Would benefit the team to play with two fullbacks that way.

  20. I do and thanks for reading. 🙂

    I do disagree on the Podolski vs. Schürrle point though. I think Podolski offers nothing more than experience over Schürrle at the moment. Schürrle offers more defensively, has a higher football IQ and ceiling, better link up player, better all around player and just edges him form wise. Would be a shame if he is continued to be left out by Löw.

  21. Oh excuse my mistake. I didn’t mean to describe Boateng and Höwedes as full backs, a translation mistake 😉 The word is centre back, of course.
    Löws seems to prefer these centre backs on the right side (Friedrich played that position often, too) and i wonder if there is maybe a tactical reason for that. A defensive minded player to back up the forward pushing Lahm, but he isn’t that offensive minded actually. Boateng was a far more offensive threat in this game than Lahm.
    But if Castro reaches his full potential, i believe he’s more than just an option.

  22. Right now Loew plays Van-Gaal-Style – it sure is nice to look but to risky to compete.

    Podolski sometimes takes a time out for games – but he is the type that is on the minute whenever the tournaments start. And – he already has the experience of over 91 caps. Schuerrle might be a talent – but far from the quality of Mueller or Oezil which are in their own talents something real unique. Even if Schuerrle’s performance might be better than Podolski’s (what I do not really believe) the later beats him with experience and with the standing in the team.

    Spain for decades plays the “best” soccer in Europe – and with them the Netherlands – but they never won anything until 3 years ago. Now there is a player like Puyol who is essential to their team – as is Mark van Bommel for the Netherlands.

    There is no sense for this already so young team to make it younger – as long the younger player does not show an extraordinary more talent than the old one.

    Kroos will loose ground to Khedira as Loew will not play the tournament as offensive as yesterday. You can die pretty… Badstuber and Hummels do not have a chance to look good if you just give up defensive midfield like yesterday was done.

    He will stay with Badstuber and Hummels I am sure. He prefers to have a real left foot like Badstuber is and Badstuber is a great opener for the game and part of the Bayern block that is the skeleton of the team.

    Goetze is a great young talent – but right now overhyped. He will not overtake Özil and Mueller till the European Cup as they still are improving – there seats in the team are taken if no injuries happen. This year he has to show that his last year was not a one hit wonder – even if his team probably will not run on the same wave it did the recent – show what he can do on international ground and how he improves himself. What role he than will be in the team will depend on his developments.

    What was the name of the so talent of the century again, that came from Dortmund… – who will be a lot better than Overath and Netzer combined… – Andy Moeller… – and he was a good soccer player, played internationally but never really reached the peek…

  23. We have yet to see Hummels and Höwedes in the middle. The two know each other well and did well at the U-21 level, I don’t understand why Löw won’t try it out. Badstuber is still a bit of a liability in my eyes and should behind in the pecking order and Höwedes has outperformed him for 2-3 seasons now. And as I’ve mentioned above, Höwedes simply compliments Hummels better. I hope he at least gives it a chance before the tournament.

    Agree with you on Jansen, Cacau, Marin not making the squad. I do hope S. Bender, Reus and Holtby make it though.

  24. Totally agree with your line up. Since Beck isn’t given a chance it has to be Boateng on the right, there really is no better alternative. I’d love to see Höwedes alongside Hummels but Mertesacker compliments him just as well and has the experience on his side. Badstuber does not compliment Hummels well, we saw that on Austria’s second goal, and he makes too many individual errors. I hope Löw is well aware of that and slowly brings Mertesacker back into the fold instead of benching Hummels.

    I would honestly be shocked if we saw anything different than the above mentioned line up. Barring injuries, it’s the strongest Löw can field now and would get the most out of the team and players. I hope he makes the right decision.

  25. He’d be nothing but a backup but with Mertesacker coming back, Höwedes’s form and Löw’s favorite playtoy Badstuber Boateng might be relegated to backup to Lahm or starting RB.

    Castro is more of a fullback than Höwedes or Träsch in my opinion but he has played so many different position over the years, the inconsistency might be a reason why he isn’t called up. It is strange though because there were many moments where he was deserving of a call up. Löw works in mysterious ways.

  26. The question is should Mertesacker regain his place?

    Currently, we have seen combinations of Hummels-Badstuber, and Hummels-Hoewedes. My guess tells me:

    we start with Hummels. He is the main passing outlet. Mertesacker partners him – experience and defense. Badstuber and Hoewedes are their direct subs – both with their own qualities, but not yet at the level of Hummels and Merte.

    RB/LB – they can always interchange lahm and boateng… they already did that to great effect before.

    Some guys that won’t be making the team: Marin, Jansen (but if Schmelzer and Aogo get injured, pencil Jansen in as sub-LB), Holtby (barring an injury to Schuerrle), Friedrich (so long Arne, its been great), Adler (unlucky guy), Cacau (Gomez will take the sub spot behind Klose as their striker).

    Some on the fringes: Sven Bender and Marco Reus. Reus needs to be healthy when there are germany games and Bender could be subbed by his twin anyway!

  27. My team for the EURO:

    —————-Neuer—————–

    Boateng-Hummels-Mertesacker-Lahm

    ——-Schweinsteiger—-Kroos——–

    —Müller——-Özil———–Schürrle

    ————–Klose——————-

    Totally agree with you that Klose makes the Mannschaft combine better upfront. Gomez too static for my taste.
    Schürrle is a more balanced choice for the left wing, his pace allows him also to recover lost balls.

    Özil a future winner of the golden ball?

    Germany will make itself with a trophy in 2012 or 2014 or even both. Apart from talent, the squad is experienced and more importantly has a good mix between foreign leagues and bundesliga players. For me a key factor. It’s been a long way!

  28. Where should Schmelzer play on the pitch? Now that Löw has switched Lahm to left-back (to let him play on the side he’s used to, after Heynckes switched him to the left in Bayern) probably no other left-back will have any minutes on the pitch in official matches.
    I wonder if Castro might get any chance to play at right-back. But Löw seems to prefer the full-back types on this position: Boateng, Höwedes, Träsch (although more of a defensive midfielder).

  29. I want to see Schürrle and Götze in a starting lineup. And the Dortmund genius can turn in general to the latent weapon for a German command. It is very pleasant that Germany was ahead of schedule selected on the European championship. Besides, she has repeated the record in 8 victories successively at a selection stage. Earlier such was in a cycle to the World championship of 1954.
    Schmelzer hasn’t told the word. But it will be difficult for him to make the way in a starting lineup as its position is occupied now by the indisputable captain Lahm.

  30. Thank you Samuel. Time will tell about Schmelzer, I think Löw has his mind made up about 90% of the team going into the tournament next year and Schmelzer might not even make the cut.

  31. Fantastic read.Its the best one so far on the match. I wonder if Löw would give Schmelzer another shot in the next game.

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