Frankfurt Stadion – Frankfurt, 4th September, 2015 – 20:45 CET
Germany gear up for a Group D clash against group toppers Poland in the Commerzbank-Arena in Frankfurt on Friday. Die Mannschaft will look to avenge their 2-0 defeat suffered at the hands of the Poland in Warsaw who are leading Germany by one point with 14 points. Goals from Arkadiusz Milik and Sebastian Mila shocked Germany last October handing Poland their first victory over the Germans. Following this win, Adam Nawa kaa s remained top of the table with wins against Georgia in the two legs and draws against Scotland and Republic of Ireland. Meanwhile the Germans continued to struggle with their rhythm against fast, counter attacking sides. Fridaya s match will be an equally important match for both teams as Poland look to hold onto their top spot while Joachim Lowa s men look to surpass Poland with a win to secure automatic qualification.
Germany Head coach Jogi Lowa s staff received bitter news before Fridaya s qualifier as Marco Reus broke his toe in a match against Hertha Berlin in the Bundesliga. Though Ozil returned back to team training after receiving being treated by the team doctors, Reusa absence will leave Low a player short in the attacking department. Thomas Muller will most likely be starting alongside Bayer Leverkusena s Karim Bellarabi and Mesut Ozil upfront. Even though Max Kruse and Kevin Volland can play in the striker position Low is short of a genuine striker in the squad which could probably result in Mario Gotze playing as the false nine. The engine room looks stabilized with the return of captain Bastian Schweinsteiger to the squad and will most likely partner Ilkay Gundogan in the middle. Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels have been the preferred centre half partnership under Low and are most likely to start Fridaya s game. With all the other positions almost certain, the most intriguing question is, who will take up the full-back positions? After Philipp Lahma s retirement, the German boss has experimented with a number of other players including Stuttgarta s Antonio Rudiger, Shkodran Mustafi, and Hoffenheim’s Sebastian Rudy. But none of the players managed to convince the former Cologne coach. Dortmunda s youngster Matthias Ginter might also play on the right side of the defence due to his ability to play as a full-back. Liverpoola s Emre Can who has been called up for the first time by the senior squad might serve as a backup for Jonas Hector who remains the only possible option for left-back in the absence of Erik Durm.
Probable Lineups(4-2-3-1): Neuer ; Jonas Hector, Hummels, Boateng, Rudy ; Gundogan, Schweinsteiger(C) ; Ozil, Muller, Bellarabi; Gotze .
Poland After shocking the World Champions in Warsaw, Adam Nawa kaa s men held firm onto their top spot with two wins and two draws in the following qualifiers. The will be looking to stop the Germans who will look to press with quick movement of the ball. Robert Lewandowski has been on fire leading the goal charts with 7 goals from six qualifiers will be the danger man for Germany and will be leading the line alongside Arkadiusz Milik. Maciej Rybus and Kamil Grosicki who have been regulars under Nawa ka will be the men waiting on the flanks to initiate devastating counter attacks. Another winger Jakub B aszczykowski who just moved to Serie A with Fiorentina will most likely start from the bench and his inclusion in the starting XI in the place of the much consistent Rybus would spring a surprise for the opposition. Wis a KrakA?wa s midfielder Krzysztof M czy ski might be the one who will partner Grzegorz Krychowiak in the heart of the midfield. The back line who soaked most of the pressure in matches against oppositions dominating the ball might consist of A?ukasz Szuka a and Torino FCa s Kamil Glik in the central defence with Dortmunda s A?ukasz Piszczek and FK Krasnodara s Artur J drzejczyk most likely to be assigned the job of bombing forward against Germanya s inexperienced full-backs. Wojciech Szcz sny who is currently on loan to AS Roma will be starting between the sticks for Poland. Sebastian Mila who scored the second goal against Germany in the previous meeting will be a key substitution from the bench for head coach Nawa ka. Probable Lineups(4-4-2): Szcz sny ; J drzejczyk, Kamil Glik, A?ukasz Szuka a, Piszczek ; Maciej Rybus, M czy ski, Krychowiak, Grosicki ; Lewandowski(C), Milik
Players to Watch out for
Germany: Thomas Muller
The most consistent component of the German team in all major tournaments. No surprise that Thomas Muller will play a key role against in Fridaya s match. His ability to find spaces inside the box comes in more than handy when he plays for Germany. He would be the chief operator near the penalty area moving into dangerous positions, unsettling the defences. Though his team played on a flat note in the entire second half in Warsaw, Muller will be the main man to collect crosses from Bellarabi and Mesut Ozil inside the box and make the difference. Also with more number of creative players around him, the 26-year old will shoulder an additional responsibility of scoring goals a situation where he often excelled for his country.
Poland: Robert Lewandowski
Thomas Mullera s partner at Bayern Munich will also be in the spotlight on Friday but this time in oppositiona s jersey. The Pole has been in terrific form in the qualifiers as his 7 goals stand one above Englanda s Danny Welbeck, Bosniaa s Edin Dzeko and Walesa Gareth Bale. He was the chief creator of both the goals in the 2-0 win against Germany and will again pose the same amount of danger this time. His club form has been superb with Bayern Munich which will only add to his confidence with the national team. Supported ably by Arkadiusz Milik upfront, Lewandowskia s ability to carve open opposition defences is a well known quality which Germany has to be wary about.
Germany 1 – 1 Poland Although both the teams are most likely to book automatic qualification spots for Euro 2016, Fridaya s match in Frankfurt will be the most intense fixture among all the other qualifiers. Joachim Low has been trying to restore the style and rhythm that saw them become World Champions in Brazil and Die Mannschaft are slowly adjusting to the changing landscape around them. Meanwhile, 2012 Euroa s joint hosts look to finish on top of the table which will be a huge confidence boost going into Francea s showpiece event. But both the teams will be cautious not to give away any goals, keeping the goal difference in mind. Nevertheless, there are no favorites going into the fixture as it promises to be an engaging game of football between two strong teams.