As Germany and Netherlands prepare themselves to renew the epic rivalry between themselves, the players, coaches, and fans would know that this match is about much more than the battle on the football pitch.
The Paris attacks that took place on Friday night, when Germany was playing a friendly against France, have shaken the world, with at least 129 people killed in the city, and several hundred others injured.
There was also an attempt to target the Stade de France, where the Germans were playing the French, with one of the suicide bombers detonating his device near the stadium after being denied entry. The blast could be heard from inside the stadium, and has been recorded on camera as the match was going on. These incidents have left the world of football wondering what is more important.
Results dona t justify anything for Loew anymore
At the pre-match press conference in Hannover, Loew outlined the importance of going ahead with these friendlies, to show the terrorists that their acts have done nothing to curb the freedom and happiness that football brings to the world.
“After sleeping on it, it was clear that the game must go ahead – also in solidarity with our French friends,a Loew was quoted saying in FourFourTwo. “We will think of the victims, the relatives and all of France tomorrow night in Hannover.”
Much needed rest for Germanya s key players
Due to this approach to the match, Loew is all set to rest some of his more experienced players, even though a Germany-Netherlands match is normally quite a hotly-contested affair.
The Germans are all set to rest the likes of captain Bastian Schweinsteiger, forward Lukas Podolski and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. They would also be missing out on the services of Jonas Hector and Jerome Boateng, who have picked up knocks from their friendly against France. Leroy Sane will also not take part as he has been called up to represent the Germany U-21 side.
No more a shot at redemption for Netherlands
However, even for them, the scenario seems to have changed now. Seeing their German counterparts trapped inside the Stade de France overnight, because of the Paris attacks, is not something any professional would want for another fellow football player or coach.
In fact, there were even talks of this friendly being called off, not just because of security issues, but also due to the mental trauma posed on the players by the incidents in Paris.
Thus, Netherlands coach Danny Blind aptly said, a One realises more than ever that there are more important things than football. It is not about statements or systems. What matters is compassion and connectedness. There is no warm-up match, but [it is] as the Germans say, a friendly match a literally.” (via Eurosport).
We might have seen matches of great rivalry between these two teams in the past, but Tuesday nighta s friendly will clearly not be amongst those.
It is a time when football and its rivalries take a back seat, as the teams and their fans unite to fight those that spread terror. It is a match where the victims of the ghastly acts of terror will be remembered — a match to promote peace.