|Host nation: Qatar Date: November 20-December 18 Reporting: Stay on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, BBC Radio 5 Stay, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru, BBC Sounds and BBC Sport web site and app. Daily TV listings – Full protection particulars|
The unthinkable can occur once more.
Germany stay in actual hazard of being dumped out of a number of World Cups within the group levels, having did not win both of their first two matches for the primary time since 1938.
Japan’s shock 1-0 loss towards Costa Rica on Sunday spared Hansi Flick’s males their earliest ever exit, however the four-time champions now know they have to beat the Costa Ricans on Thursday and hope Japan don’t beat Spain.
Germany are backside of Group E, with Spain on prime on 4 factors and Costa Rica and Japan sandwiched between them on three factors.
A possible exit has been branded “a catastrophe occasions 10”, and would go away the way forward for boss Flick, and the course of the nation’s sport, shrouded in uncertainty.
“Two occasions in a row can be actually, actually unhealthy”
Germany followers in all probability thought they’d already hit all-time low after they had been knocked out of Russia 2018 on the first hurdle, ending backside of their group behind South Korea, Mexico and Sweden.
They reached the final 16 of Euro 2020 however had been crushed 2-0 by England, ending Joachim Low’s 15-year reign as supervisor.
A shock defeat by Japan of their opening sport of this event, adopted by a struggle to a draw towards Spain, has left Flick’s rebuild on shaky floor.
Former German striker and supervisor Jurgen Klinsmann advised World Soccer in Qatar podcast: “We made an enormous, massive mistake within the first sport. No one anticipated us to lose towards a really robust Japan workforce.
“We allowed ourselves to come back residence from Russia with a disastrous efficiency, so the expectation was clear for the German followers, they might at the very least undergo.
“We’d at all times say we need to win the World Cup, however this time the semi-finals can be an awesome achievement.
“We’re speaking about possibly leaving after the group stage, so you possibly can name it a catastrophe occasions 10 as an alternative of a easy catastrophe.”
Earlier than Russia 2018, the final time Germany did not qualify for the second spherical of the World Cup was 1938 in France, when there have been solely 16 groups within the event.
They’ve been finalists eight occasions, however have received only one World Cup match since lifting the trophy in 2014.
“A part of our tradition was at all times to have the ability to focus when it actually issues,” Klinsmann added.
“Qualifying was by no means an issue for us, and on the event we at all times discovered a solution to undergo and at the very least shoot for the semifinals.
“Individuals forgive you for a nasty end result – however two occasions in a row can be actually, actually unhealthy.”
Now what for Flick’s rebuild?
When former Bayern Munich boss Flick was appointed nationwide workforce coach in August 2021, Germany had simply been knocked out of the European Championship by England.
Predecessor Low stepped down as deliberate after 15 years and Flick was tasked with rebuilding the nationwide sport, declaring on the time “our goal is to return to the top of the sport”.
It began pretty properly, with seven wins from seven offering simple qualification and regardless of combined Nations League outcomes, the temper within the nation was fairly upbeat forward of the event.
However that temper has shortly soured, with a sluggish begin to this event which means they’ve simply two wins from their final 10 matches.
BBC Sport spoke to Germany and Wolfsburg fan Walter, who was on the Al Bayt Stadium on Sunday to observe his nation’s 1-1 draw with Spain.
“If we get knocked out once more within the group stage, I do not assume Flick can proceed as supervisor,” he mentioned. “It might be a catastrophe.
“It looks like we’re nowhere close to groups like Brazil and France and it’s totally unhappy for us as Germany followers.
“The noise if we get knocked out will probably be enormous, it is going to be very uncomfortable for lots of our gamers.
“A defeat towards Costa Rica can be a brand new low. It might be an excessive amount of.”
Can Germany be spared one other humiliation?
It seemed lots worse for Germany when Alvaro Morata fired Spain forward of their group sport on Sunday, however the rescue – and actual hope – got here within the type of substitute Niclas Fullkrug.
The journeymen fired within the equalizer to go away Germany understanding victory towards Costa Rica will put enormous strain on Japan, who face Spain, however any of the 4 groups in Group E might nonetheless progress to the knockout stage.
Klinsmann advised BBC Sport: “The purpose is big for Germany. I am very assured that Spain will get the job achieved towards Japan and that Germany will undergo to the following spherical.
“I’d be stunned if Germany problem for the trophy. It might be enormous if they may get to the semi-finals, however I believe difficult for the trophy is reserved for different groups.”
Former Manchester United and Denmark goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel added on BBC Sport: “I count on Spain and Germany to undergo now and as soon as they get previous the group stage everyone knows it is going to be a distinct event for the groups they usually method it in a different approach.
“There’s each alternative to enhance.”
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