An unforgettable Saturday night in Wolfsburg saw Germany torn apart by a tenacious Japan side 1-4.
It was performance and a result that highlighted the recent struggles surrounding the German national team and it left the future of head coach Hansi Flick in the balance. However, after the game, the former Bayern Munich head coach would comment on a deserved Japanese victory:
“First of all you are brutally disappointed, you have to recognize that Japan is a good team. We currently don’t have the means to outplay such a compact defence. It was simply not enough. We got into the game started well, but the first chance that Japan had was a goal. Then we come back and make it 1:1. Then as the stadium starts getting behind the side we immediately go down 1-2. I don’t think that the team can be accused of something. They tried again and again, but then there were individual mistakes. The opponent took advantage of them coldly and deservedly won.”
“Today you have to say very clearly that we were in no shape to beat this team. The Japanese are all well trained and have the basics down. We in German football just have to wake up and work on these things. That doesn’t help us at the moment. But we will still prepare well for France. It’s clear that the disappointment is great and I can understand the criticism. I can’t say anything more about it.”
With Germany’s horrendous form continuing, Flick would be questioned about his future and the head coach would explain: “I think we’re doing well and I’m the right coach. But I know that there’s a lot of dynamism in professional football. I can’t foresee what else will come.”
A meeting against France on Tuesday at the Westfalenstadion could become an historic day within German football and Flick would comment on the upcoming fixture: “We have to make sure that we go through this together. It doesn’t help to assign any blame. We have to shake ourselves now and try to be different on the pitch against France.”
Another resounding defeat leaves the German national team in a precarious situation. Without a victory in their last five matches, as well as four consecutive defeats, alarm bells have certainly been left ringing around the DFB.
With the European Championships just a year away, it is hard to imagine that the DFB will allow for the national team to enter the competition on home soil in such poor form. Another disappointing result or performance against France could spell the end for Flick’s reign of terror.
GGFN | Will Shopland