Speaking ahead of Germany’s final group stage game against Costa Rica, Hansi Flick kept his cards close to his chest in regards to who would start against Costa Rica despite several probing questions from present journalists.
On whether Niclas Füllkrug, who scored the all important equaliser against Spain to secure a point, Flick said: “Nice try. We’ll see about that tomorrow.”
Flick (57) confirmed that all 26 players are available. Kai Havertz missed the game against Spain due to a cold, and not because of his performance against Japan that many had suggested. Leroy Sané also played his first minutes at the World Cup against Spain after a knee injury kept him out vs Japan.
“Everyone is fit,” said Flick. “I think everyone can play. Leroy was very positive before Spain, we spoke to the doctor and physio and then we decided the way things would go. Leroy coped well and can now play from the start.”
Flick also praised his performance of Germany’s three-man midfield of Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka and Ilkay Gündogan against Spain, but wouldn’t confirm his intentions against Costa Rica.
Germany must beat Costa Rica and hope that Spain beat Japan if they are to advance to the knockout stages. In the event of a draw between Spain and Japan, Germany would need to win against Costa Rica by at least two goals. If Japan pull off another upset and beat Spain in the final game, and Germany beat Costa Rica, it would be who has the better goal difference between Spain and Germany – meaning it would likely be Spain given their 7-0 win against Costa Rica.
GGFN | Daniel Pinder