Germany’s Mercedes Benz team bus has a slogan “Best never rest” inscribed by the side of it. Around three months prior to the World Cup 2018, a campaign was launched by Mercedes Benz in collaboration with the German national team. The campaign depicts the untiring striving for advancement and perfection which Mercedes-Benz and The German team share – and which drives both to top performance over and over again. “Always keep on moving, keep on fighting, and don’t rest on your laurels” – this is what Germany national team stands for. As per their Coach Joachim Loew, the “Best Never Rest” World Cup campaign draws on this high standard in emotionally charged motifs and sets the mood for the most important sporting event of the rest of this year.
Since Germany’s first round exit in the European Championships in 2004, they have made at least the semi finals of all the major international tournaments they have participated in, including the World Cup 2014 triumph in Brazil. And this tournament will not be different because of the following reasons:
- Germany has been in superb form in their qualifying stages. Despite their Coach Joachim Loew mixing youth with experience in the qualifiers, they had a 100% win record in the qualifiers winning all of their 10 matches. This is an all time record. Spain is the only other team to have achieved this feet in 2010 qualifiers.
- Germany has immense squad depth with talented players in all departments of the game. The squad is a perfect mix of youth, talent and experience. They have established players in Toni Kroos, Mesut Ozil, Thomas Mueller,Jermoe Boateng, Maro Reus with able backups in Leon Goretzka,Julian Brandt, Nicklas Sule, Leroy Sane etc. who are young but extremely talented and has plenty of international exposure. Loew will certainly have a huge headache in regard to the selection of their starting eleven.
- Loew has the luxury to field a very experienced first eleven in Russia too. He has eight to nine players in Toni Kroos,Mesut Ozil,Thomas Mueller,Jerome Boateng, Sami Khedira,Manuel Neuer etc. who started Germany’s final game against Argentina in 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
- Loew will have inform strikers in Timo Werner, Nils Petersen to lead his forward line. Wener and Petersen have been a real revelation in the last couple of seasons. They will have back up in ageing but experienced Mario Gomez. In last World Cup Germany’s forward line was only their concern area wherein they had to include veteran like Miroslav Klose due to lack of good strikers.
- In Confederations’ Cup held in Russia last year, Low sent an inexperienced young squad who were all under the age of 23. Led by Julian Draxler, Germany emerged triumphant in Russia. They played in three of the stadiums to be used in the upcoming tournament. The Germans would be well acquainted with their climate and ground conditions which will aid them to excel further.
- But their biggest advantage would be Coach Joachim Loew’s presence. Under him the Germany team has played in six major international tournaments and performed outrageously. He has reached the semi final stage atleast of all the aforementioned tournaments. Winning the Confederations Cup in 2017, World
Cup 2014 and finishing runners up to Spain in European Championship 2008. He knows his team and his players in an out. He motivates them both on and off the field.
Hence it can be said that the German team has a real big chance to repeat their 2014 success in Russia. However, there are hindrances as well. No team except Brazil (1958 & 1962) has ever won back to back trophies. Moreover, it will be hard to replace players like Bastian Schweinstiger, Philip Lahm and Miroslav Klose who have retired and passed on the baton to players like Toni Kroos, Marco Reus, Timo Werner to replicate the wonderful achievement of winning the World Cup 2014 in Brazil. These young players will carry an additional burden of expectations on their shoulders and has to ensure that their performance doesn’t dip during the tournament.