Manuel Veth –
Germany vs Estonia – Tuesday, June 11, 19:45BST/20:45CEST – Opel Arena, Mainz, Germany
Half the job is already done for Germany. On Saturday Germany managed to beat 2-0 Belarus in what was an industrious performance.
“We are extremely satisfied,” captain Manuel Neuer said after the Belarus game to the television station RTL. “We wanted to win away from home, which can be difficult against teams that sit back and just try to defend. We did well tonight, although we did miss a few chances.”
We’ve completed the first step though,” Marco Reus said. The second needs to follow on Tuesday [against Estonia],” Reus added.
Six points out of two games constitute a solid start to Germany’s Euro 2020 qualification campaign, especially given the country’s disastrous 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign last summer. In fact, in the middle of the rebuild wins are the only thing that matter, whether they are over the Netherlands (3-2) or Belarus (2-0).
Hence, on Tuesday the actual result against Estonia will be secondary. The only thing that will truly matter are another three points, which would set the path towards Germany’s Euro 2020 qualification.
For Estonia, in the meantime, it will be the first game against Germany since achieving independence from the Soviet Union. The two countries met last 80 years ago in a friendly played at the Kadrioru staadion on June 29, 1939.
It was a game that took place on the eve of World War II. Just over two months later Germany would invade Poland from the West and the Soviet Union from the East. One year later the three Baltic States were invaded by the Soviet Union and then changed hands in 1941 when Germany invaded the USSR before returning under Soviet control at the end of World War II.
Estonia finally regained independence in August 1991. The national team played their first internationally recognized friendly in June 1992 in a 1-1 draw against Slovenia. Now on the eve of the 80 year anniversary of the two countries last appearance Estonia travel to Germany to face a mission impossible at the Opel Arena in Mainz.
The Baltic State, after all, has never qualified for a major tournament and started Euro 2020 qualification with two defeats against Northern Ireland (1-2, 0-2). Although they managed a 1-0 victory over Gibraltar in a friendly in March anything but a Germany victory would be a significant surprise.
Germany vs Estonia – Players to look out for:
Leroy Sané #19 – Germany (Manchester City)
Leroy Sané has finally grown in his national team role. The winger managed not a single goal in his first 15 games for the national team and was then cut from the team ahead of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Perhaps it was a blessing in disguise for everyone involved as Sané missed Germany’s most disastrous tournament in history but was also shown that he had to improve his work rate. The winger has done exactly that scoring four goals in his last five games for Germany. With that in mind, it is no surprise that his teammates are now working on getting him to return to the Bundesliga.
Konstantin Vassiljev #14 – Estonia (FC Flora)
Konstantin Vassiljev is the most experienced player in Estonia’s national team. The captain has made 113 appearances for his country scoring 25 goals in the process. Looking back at a career that saw him play in Russia, Poland and Slovenia the 34 now plays for FC Flora back in his native Estonia and in 14 games has scored five goals and ten assists. Against Germany, the playmaker now leads a very young side into what will be a difficult challenge.
Germany vs Estonia – Match Stats
- Germany have a 100% record against Estonia, winning each of their previous three meetings with an aggregate score of 11-1.
- It has been 80 years since these sides last met, Ernst Lehner and Reinhard Schaletzki on target in a 2-0 friendly win in 1939.
- Germany have now won each of their last 13 qualifiers (FIFA World Cup and UEFA European Championships combined), equalling the record they set between 2010 and 2012.
Futbolgrad Network Prediction: Germany vs Estonia – 4-0
Germany vs Estonia – Lineups
Neuer – Ginter, Süle, Tah – Schulz, Kimmich, Goretzka, Halstenberg- Sane, Reus, Gnabry
Head Coach: Marcus Sorg (Interim)
Lepmets – Pikk, Mets, Vihmann, Teniste – Käit, Dimitrijev – Sinyavskiy, Vassiljev, Zenjov – Sappinen
Head Coach: Martin Reim
Manuel Veth is the owner and Editor in Chief of the Futbolgrad Network. He also works as a freelance journalist and among others contributes to Forbes.com and Pro Soccer USA. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States,” which is available HERE. Originally from Munich, Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently is located in Victoria BC, Canada. Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.