Not many national teams can brag of achieving more success than Germany when it comes to World Cup participation. They’ve finished in the top three eleven times (the most recent of which was a bronze medal in the previous World Cup) – three times champions, four times silver medalists, four time bronze medalists. They haven’t made it to the World Cup only twice; and out of all their appearances, the last time when they didn’t make it at least to quarter finals was in 1938.
In the three of the latest World Cup competitions, they’ve shown dogged determination but failed to go beyond the semifinals. Maybe this year they will manage to grab hold of the trophy?
Most of the players in the German national team are sourced from Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund. While they haven’t had a season as successful as the previous one, when they were Champions League finalists, both teams certainly remain as respectable as ever and players from them are always sought after.
The preliminary list of players who will try to make their nation proud this year is:
Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Roman Weidenfeller (Borussia Dortmund), Ron-Robert Zieler (Hannover 96)
Defenders: Jerome Boateng (Bayern Munich), Erik Durm (Borussia Dortmund), Benedikt Howedes (Schalke 04), Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund), Marcell Jansen (Hamburg), Phillipp Lahm (Bayern Munich), Per Mertesacker (Arsenal), Shkodran Mustafi (Sampdoria), Marcel Schmelzer (Borussia Dortmund)
Midfielders: Lars Bender (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler, (Schalke 04), Kevin Grosskreutz (Borussia Dortmund), Sami Khedira (Real Madrid), Matthias Ginter (SC Freiburg), Leon Goretzka (Schalke 04), Mario Gotze (Bayern Munich), Andre Hahn (Augsburg), Toni Kroos (Bayern Munich), Max Meyer (Schalke), Thomas Müller (Bayern Munich), Mesut Ozil (Arsenal), Lukas Podolski (Arsenal), Marco Reus (Borussia Dortmund), Andre Schurrle (Chelsea), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Bayern Munich)
Forwards: Miroslav Klose (SS Lazio), Kevin Volland (TSG Hoffenheim)
Since only twenty three players are required for the final squad, seven of these men will have to stay at home.
What we’re likely to see this year are some of the provisional midfielders playing more up front than it would usually be necessary – the ones who can expect to find themselves in this new role are Andre Schurrle and Thomas Muller, who is perhaps the key man in the German squad right now. So the Germans’ playing system is likely to be altered.
This is so because some of the leading German attackers, such as Gomez and Kruse, are injured and cannot be selected, so the only men available to play against the opponent’s defense are Klose, who is way past his peak, and the all-too-young Volland. They will require some assistance.
Germany are playing against Portugal (favorites to end up in the first spot), USA (amusingly, coached by the former Germany national team coach, Jurgen Klinsman), and Ghana (the African team with the most versatile and imposing individuals). All of these teams will be a challenge to beat.
However, Germans are widely predicted to be the winners of this group and the World Cup itself. They will have experienced, peaking players both on the field and on the bench, so it will be a huge negative surprise if they don’t go past the quarter-finals.