(MENAFN- Nam News Network)
by Oliver Trust
BERLIN, Nov 24 (NNN-XINHUA) – It was an unpleasant trip in complete silence for the German team, back to the team's hotel in the north of Qatar.
Everyone of the 110 kilometres seemed endlessly long, as the 2014 world champions found themselves in a state of shock, after the 2-1 defeat against Japan in their World Cup opener.
It might be a curious side-effect that, two Japanese players employed by German first-tier clubs scored the winning goals: Ritsu Doan of Freiburg and Takuma Asano of Bochum.
Bad memories might have popped up regarding the 2018 tournament in Russia, when an early exit in the group followed a 1-0 defeat in the first game against Mexico.
There seem to be not many reasons to create optimism, to turn things around this time, as Germany is facing Spain, the group's assumedly strongest competitors, on Sunday, in a game that already has turned into a final.
Statistics might have hit the mind of coach Hansi Flick, as Germany only won one of the last seven encounters against Spain.
Against Japan, Germany's weaknesses in a smashing way came to light, as the team lacked efficiency upfront and in the wavering back-line.
The team and coach seem to feel the pressure emerging, considering the second group game.“Today we didn't have the final will to cross the finish line,” goalkeeper Manuel Neuer said.“We allowed Japan to come back to life as we lacked dynamic and determination.”
Ruling the game over 60 minutes, Germany didn't find answers after Japan changed its tactics and increased attacks. Flick's team gambled away a 1-0 lead and spoiled several chances.
“It's time to show character now. The situation we are in, due to our performance is a challenge. The story is: when you are not effective enough you don't get anywhere,” Bayern striker, Thomas Muller said, before admitting:“I am shocked at present.”– NNN-XINHUA
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