Manuel Veth –
Germany vs Netherlands – Friday, September 6, 19:45BST/20:45CEST – Volksparkstadion, Hamburg, Germany
For the fourth time in just 12 months Germany and the Netherlands meet in a competitive fixture. Last fall the two countries were drawn together in the UEFA Nations League, and while the Netherlands won their group, Germany finished last and was relegated.
Germany’s 3-0 defeat in Amsterdam, in particular, was a low point. Although Die Mannschaft dominated large parts of the game and had 60% possession, it was the Netherlands that carried the day. That result may have been the final straw that forced Bundestrainer Joachim Löw into making some fundamental changes to his Germany squad. A few months after the debacle in Amsterdam and Germany’s ultimate relegation to the UEFA Nations League B Joachim Löw decided to no longer nominate Thomas Müller, Mats Hummels, and Jérôme Boateng.
Instead, Löw banked on a complete rebuild. A rebuild that has already shown some success. Just days after the announcement that Müller, Hummels, and Boateng would be no longer nominated Germany defeated the Netherlands 3-2 in Amsterdam. “The three results against the Netherlands highlight the different stages of our rebuild,” Löw said this week. That, however, also means that a negative result on Friday could be interpreted as a major setback in Germany’s rebuild.
At the same time, Germany’s coaching staff relishes the opportunity to start 2020 with a big opponent. “This is a tournament summer,” midfielder Julian Brandt said. “It is, therefore, good to have a big opponent right away. Because at this point we can still correct results,” Brandt added. “This game will give us an indication of where we are at in our development,” captain Manuel Neuer said.
An indication that the Netherlands are also looking for heading into this game. The 3-0 victory against Germany in October gave the impression that Oranje were back on their way to the world elite after missing out on two consecutive tournaments. But the defeat to Germany in Amsterdam was a major setback.
Nonetheless, the game against Germany is not yet a key match for Koeman. “We have to collect 12 points in the games against Belarus and Estonia and win the head to head against Northern Ireland,” Koeman said. The same will be very much true for Germany, but Die Mannschaft have highlighted that they are back on the ascendancy and a positive result on Friday can be a big step towards qualification for Euro 2020.
Germany vs Netherlands – Players to look out for:
Marco Reus #11 – Germany (Borussia Dortmund
In Leroy Sané, Germany will miss one of their key players. Fortunately, for Bundestrainer Joachim Löw Marco Reus will be available for the game on Friday and the Borussia Dortmund forward is expected in three-man attack winged by Serge Gnabry and Timo Werner. Reus was the key player in Germany’s 3-2 victory in March, the forward assisted his new teammate Nico Schulz for the winner. The man with number 11 wants to be a decisive player for Germany and also recognizes that the Euros might be his final opportunity to put a stamp on a tournament.
Matthijs de Ligt #4 – Netherlands (Juventus)
Matthijs de Ligt was voted Eredivisie player of the year last Monday. Sensational at times for Ajax in the Champions League and the Eredivisie de Ligt struggled a bit for Juventus this weekend. “I know that I didn’t look good against Napoli,” De Ligt admitted. But the 20-year-old has the experience to recover from a poor game very quickly. Two and a half years ago de Ligt also had a poor start into his Oranje career when the Netherlands lost 2-0 to Bulgaria. Since then the 20-year-old has developed into one of the best center-backs on the planet and will be a crucial player against Germany on Friday.
Germany vs Netherlands – Match Stats
- German record v Oranje: W16 D16 L11
- Hosts’ last nine games in Hamburg: W7 D2
- Last defeat there was v Dutch in EURO ’88 semi-final
- Netherlands coach Koeman scored equaliser in that 2-1 win
Futbolgrad Network Prediction: Germany vs Netherlands – 1-1
Germany vs Netherlands – Lineups
Neuer – Tah, Süle, Ginter – Schulz, Kroos, Kimmich, Klostermann – Werner, Reus, Gnabry
Head Coach: Joachim Löw
Cillessen – Blind, van Dijk, de Ligt, Veltman – Wijnaldum, F. de Jon, de Roon – Babel, Depay, Promes
Head Coach: Ronald Koeman
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. Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently splits his time between Victoria, BC, and Munich, Germany. Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.