The 2018 World Cup in Russia is still months away, and some teams are still being put together. However, that’s not stopping the Highlander from breaking down every group to give you a comprehensive overview leading up to the first kickoff.
FIFA Ranking: 1
World Cup Appearances: 18
First Appearance: 1934
Last Appearance: 2014
Best result: Champions, 1954, 1974, 1990, 2014
Coach: Joachim Löw (German), Germany’s coach since 2006. Previously coached Germany as an assistant coach from 2004-2006.
Players to watch:
At just 22 years of age, the RB Leipzig striker has proven he is capable of wearing the Mannschaft jersey without cracking under pressure. After a great performance in the previous FIFA Confederations Cup, Werner finished as the tournament’s top scorer and demonstrated he is efficient for both his club and country teams. Werner’s youth reminds of one Thomas Muller from the 2010 FIFA World Cup where at just 20 years old, he was able to finish as the tournament’s best young player and top scorer. Just like Muller, Werner is a cold-blooded finisher when going one-on-one with the keeper and is able to position himself well to score goals. Werner, however, is more complete in terms of dribbling, speed and strength. With these attributes, Werner is capable of repeating what a young Thomas Muller once did in the South Africa 2010 World Cup.
A mastermind on the pitch, Toni Kroos (Real Madrid, Spain) is perhaps the best midfielder in the world today. Kroos is often not lauded for scoring goals or performing dribbling tricks on the field, because he possesses a different skill-set; he is an orchestrator in the midfield capable of passing with both feet without a problem. With a pass success rate of 93.3 percent, Toni Kroos distributes the ball efficiently to his teammates, who then create opportunities or score goals. Kroos is also capable of providing accurate crosses during corner kicks and free kicks, which can then turn into goals as well. Now playing in his third World Cup, Toni Kroos provides intelligence on the pitch for Germany which places them among the favorites to win the World Cup for the fifth time in their history.
Potential lineup: Neuer – Hector, Rudiger, Boateng, Kimmich – Kroos, Gundogan – Goretzka, Ozil, Sane – Werner
Prediction: 1st in group, Champions
Matches: Vs. Mexico, 6/17
Vs. Sweden, 6/23
Vs. South Korea, 6/27