When asked if there are identities in national teams and whether Germany has one, Hansi Flick stated that he wants to play a high-intensity game that forces opponents into mistakes, allowing his side to create chances.
“I do believe that there are identities,” said Flick. “Perhaps they have changed in nuances in recent years. We want to play at high intensity, be active and have possession. We want to force the opponents into mistakes which means sometimes we have to press hard. But we also want to create chances on the ball. We want to stand for attractive, modern, and attacking football.”
This comes after many would argue that Germany has lost its identity over the later years under Joachim Löw. World champions in 2014, Germany were eliminated at the group stages in Russia and also endured a poor Euro 2020 campaign which saw Die Mannschaft eliminated by England.
Flick was appointed as Löw’s assistant in 2006 and the duo had some excellent success, including reaching the Euro 2008 final in addition to their World Cup triumph six years later. It’s arguably since the retirement of Miroslav Klose and Bastian Schweinsteiger that Germany started to lose their identity.
With no real No. 9 embedded in the squad until the call-up of Niclas Füllkrug, who scored the equaliser against Spain on matchday two, Germany has no focal point in attack. Against Spain, we saw Flick operate a midfield trio, all of whom had considerable success in pressing Sergio Busquets and the Spanish defence. Is this what we can expect from Germany going forward?
In his press conference, Flick didn’t give away any clues when it came to naming a starting XI, only that all 26 players are fit. On Thursday, they face a must win game against Costa Rica.
GGFN | Daniel Pinder