At the end of the first half, as a fan of the DFB-Elf, you wanted to speak of one of the strongest performances of the national team for a long time. After the final whistle, many will just shake their heads. However, today’s 2-1 victory for the Japanese comes as no surprise given the course of the game. The reasons for the failure at the start of the World Cup.
1) Usury of opportunities
26:12 shots on goal for the German team, but only Ilkay Gündogan’s penalty and a disallowed rebound from Kai Havertz found their way into the goal. In the first half, it was mainly goal scorers Gündogan and Jamal Musiala who missed numerous chances.
At the beginning of the second half it was again Gündogan and Havertz who were unable to take advantage of several good opportunities. Jonas Hofmann and Serge Gnabry also missed putting the lid on several times in the 70th minute. Shortly before the final whistle, in the 95th minute, Leon Goretzka shot again, but his attempt from the edge of the penalty area was unable to change the bitter defeat.
2) Desolate defensive behavior
Manuel Neuer, David Raum and Antonio Rüdiger are largely exempt from criticism of the poor defensive behavior. The two goals of the Japanese are more the responsibility of Nico Schlotterbeck and Niklas Süle, who play for Borussia Dortmund, who did not look good with both goals. DFB coach Hansi Flick spoke in the ‘ARD’ of “individual errors”who contributed to the upsetting defeat.
In the game against Spain (Sunday, 8 p.m.), Flick could switch to keep his chances of reaching the round of 16. One possibility would be, for example, to let Thilo Kehrer play as a right-back. In central defense, Matthias Ginter and Armel Bella-Kotchap could become alternatives.
3) Not everything was bad
Despite the disappointment about the defeat at the start, it must also be said that the German team played better at times than they have in a long time. 74 percent ball possession, 771 (compared to 270) played passes and the already mentioned 26 shots on goal speak for themselves – the defeat could have been avoided with more efficiency in the offensive game.
If precision returns against the Spanish team, the chances of progressing are still not bad. In Niclas Füllkrug and Youssoufa Moukoko, Flick has two strikers who have already proven in the current Bundesliga season that they know where the goal is. Possible that one of them will start against Spain.