Germany have been in a state of transition since their 2014 World Cup win in Brazil and there are plenty of sides heading into this summer’s European Championship with a better chance of lifting the trophy than Die Mannschaft.
The Germany camp themselves have recognised the need to shuffle the pack in order to find success with Joachim Low set to step down as manager after 15 years in charge after this year’s tournament.
They reached the semi-final stage of the last Euros in 2016, losing 2-0 to France before their major tournament pedigree took a battering at the latest edition of the World Cup.
Three years ago in Russia, Germany failed to make it out of their section, finishing bottom of a mediocre group containing Sweden, Mexico and South Korea.
The Nations League tournaments have offered a chance for redemption but in the 2018-19 edition they failed to win any of their four games against France and the Netherlands, while they finished with a 2-3-1 record in last year’s competition.
Defence the Weak Point for Die Mannschaft
The harrowing 6-0 defeat to Spain in November last year is perhaps all the evidence punters need that Germany’s defence still needs work.
There is minimal experience in their rearguard beyond Mats Hummels. Antonio Rudiger has only recently retired to the first-team fold for Chelsea yet remains one of the most-capped defenders for his national side and Low has struggled to settle on a regular rearguard since the World Cup win in Brazil.
But further up the pitch, things are looking more promising for Die Mannschaft. They have some of the best anchor midfielders to choose from in world football in Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka and Ilkay Gundogan and, although frozen out by Low at the last World Cup, Thomas Muller has reinvented himself with Bayern Munich.
Serge Gnabry was another key component of the Bayern treble-winning side last season and Chelsea duo Kai Havertz and Timo Werner are finally showing signs of their former selves now they are under compatriot Thomas Tuchel’s stewardship.
Germany Could Exceed Expectations
After their recent endeavours in major tournaments, little is expected of Germany and not many punters will be rushing to back them at
But being underestimated may become Germany’s secret weapon at this summer’s tournament and it would be foolish to completely rule out a side composed mainly of players who stormed to the Champions League title with Bayern Munich last season. The Germans have proved adept at winning this competition in the past too, lifting the Henri Delaunay trophy three times in the past, while they’ve made at least the semi-finals in the last three editions.
This will be Low’s last major tournament in charge and he will be hoping to draw on that success in 2014 when it was also a case of now or never for much of Germany’s old guard.
With a decent blend of youth and experience materialising in the Germany camp and given how easily they dismantled Iceland in their opening World Cup 2022 qualifier, there is reason to believe the team could be on the up again.
There is reason to believe they could cause a shock at this summer’s tournament, which they begin with matches against France, Hungary and Portugal in Group F.
Group of Death to Test German Mettle
5/4 joint-favourites with France to finish top of their pool and that would certainly make a statement given the quality of the other sides involved. Portugal and France have won the last two major tournaments between them, while Hungary are an improving side and reached the last-16 of Euro 2016.
The Germans will need to hit the ground running if they are to win Group F having been paired with world champions France in their opening game on June 15, a game Low’s men are
7/5 favourites to win.
*All odds correct at time of writing