It is quite rare that a Germany national football team heads into a major international tournament like the Euro 2020 as an underdog. Even though Germany are the joint-most successful side in the UEFA European championships with three titles alongside Spain, not much is expected of them in the upcoming Euros.
Since winning the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Germany have experienced a bit of a lull compared to their impeccably high standards. The Die Mannschaft were knocked out in the group stage at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Germany were also thrashed 6-0 by Spain in the UEFA Nations League last year - their worst defeat since 1931. They also recently suffered a 2-1 loss to minnows North Macedonia in the World Cup qualifiers, indicating that the European heavyweights aren’t at their ruthless best at the moment.
These results, in fact, have forced Joachim Low to step down as Germany head coach with former Bayern Munich manager Hansi Flick set to take charge after the Euros.
Joachim Low and his men are placed in Group F, which is considered the group of death at Euro 2020. Germany’s group features world champions France, Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal and Hungary.
Germany have announced an experienced squad for Euro 2020, recalling World Cup winners Thomas Muller and Mats Hummels after a two-year absence. Low has also added Monaco striker Kevin Volland, who has not played for Germany since 2016, as well as the Bayern Munich teenager Jamal Musiala.
Germany squad for Euro 2020
Goalkeepers: Bernd Leno, Manuel Neuer, Kevin Trapp
Defenders: Matthias Ginter, Robin Gosens, Christian Gunter, Marcel Halstenberg, Mats Hummels, Lukas Klostermann, Robin Koch, Antonio Rudiger, Niklas Sule
Midfielders: Emre Can, Leon Goretzka, Ilkay Gundogan, Kai Havertz, Jonas Hofmann, Joshua Kimmich, Toni Kroos, Florian Neuhaus
Forwards: Serge Gnabry, Thomas Muller, Jamal Musiala, Timo Werner, Leroy Sane, Kevin Volland
SWOT Analysis of Germany Euro 2020 squad
Germany have several quality midfielders in their squad for the upcoming UEFA European championships. With the likes of Toni Kroos, Joshua Kimmich, Ilkay Gundogan, Kai Havertz and Leon Goretzka, they have depth and a variety of options to choose from.
The team also possesses world class wingers who can change the complexion of the game with their speed and trickery in the wide areas. Leroy Sane, Serge Gnabry, Jamal Musiala and Thomas Muller are all household names in world football and it’s safe to say that opposition defenders will be far from keen when it comes to facing them.
However, the Die Mannschaft lacks a traditional No. 9 in the mould of Robert Lewandowski or Harry Kane. The form of Chelsea forward Timo Werner is also a concern for Joachim Low’s side. Werner has failed to live upto the expectations since his transfer to Chelsea at the start of last season.
He’s lacked confidence in front of goal and was guilty of missing an easy opportunity during Germany’s recent loss against North Macedonia. The German defence has also been vulnerable in recent times having kept just two clean sheets in their last 11 outings.
Since people have unusually low expectations from the German side this time around, the players can take this opportunity to express themselves on the field as they look to rally around the coach to give him a perfect send off.
Furthermore, Germany will play all its group games and a potential quarterfinal at home in Munich. This will give them an added advantage.
Germany scored a whopping 30 goals in their eight UEFA European Championship qualifying matches. This figure has been bettered by just one team in the groups of teams who played only eight games and that was England.
Captain Manuel Neuer will hope that his team can rediscover their Midas touch in front of goal at Euro 2020 as they bid to become the most successful team in the history of the competition. Germany will begin their Euro 2020 campaign against world champions France at the Allianz Arena on June 16.
Featured photo: THILO SCHMUELGEN / POOL / AFP