Germany will face off against Turkey in an international friendly this midweek at the RheinEnergieStadion in Cologne.
Club football will take a backseat for the next couple of weeks as the second international break of the 2020/21 kicks off this week. And one of the most interesting match-ups of the week will come our way from Cologne, where Germany will play hosts to Turkey in a friendly encounter on Wednesday.
The last international break wasn’t particularly successful for Die Mannschaft as they played out two 1-1 draws against Spain and Switzerland in the UEFA Nations League. With games against Ukraine and Switzerland coming up next, Joachim Low’s men will be aiming to get into their groove with a victory.
Turkey, on the other hand, also endured a difficult return to action last month. Senol Gunes’ side lost their Nations League opener 1-0 against Hungary, before being held to a goalless draw against a ten-man Serbia side. With tough games against Russia and Serbia on the horizon, the Crescent-Stars will be looking to get back to winning ways.
The last time these two teams met was in October 2011, in the UEFA Euro Qualifiers, with Germany prevailing 3-1. Ahead of this exciting encounter coming our way from the RheinEnergieStadion, The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at both the teams.
Team News & tactics
Bayern Munich quartet Serge Gnabry, Manuel Neuer, Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka are back in the Germany squad after being left out for the previous round of fixtures. However, they along with club teammate Niklas Sule and will only be involved in the Nations League fixtures, as is the case with Toni Kroos, Lukas Klostermann and Marcel Hastenberg.
Here's Joachim #Löw's squad for our upcoming matches against Turkey, Ukraine and Switzerland 🇩🇪
— Germany (@DFB_Team_EN) October 2, 2020
There are three uncapped players in the squad in Mahmoud Dahoud, Jonas Hofmann and Florian Neuhaus. Suat Serdar has had to withdraw from the squad due to an injury, while Leroy Sane and Thilo Kehrer also miss out. In addition, Ilkay Gundogan hasn’t been picked in the squad after he recently tested positive for coronavirus.
Low is expected to field a largely second-string side against Turkey. Bernd Leno is likely to get the nod in goal ahead of Kevin Trapp. In front of him, the manager is expected to set his team up in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Benjamin Henrichs and Nico Schulz likely to take up the full-back slots, while Robin Koch and Niklas Stark start at the centre.
Mahmoud Dahoud is in line to make his debut for Die Mannschaft, occupying one of the two pivot positions in the centre of the park. Partnering him on Wednesday should be Bayer Leverkusen’s 23-year-old midfielder Nadiem Amiri, although Florian Neuhaus is also an option. Julian Draxler is in contention to start as the No. 10.
Jonas Hofmann should make his debut as well, after impressing for Borussia Monchengladbach early into the 2020/21 campaign. He should start on the right flank with Julian Brandt slotting in on the left. Luca Waldschmidt could get the nod as the lone striker ahead of Timo Werner.
Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Leno; Henrichs, Koch, Stark, Schulz; Amiri, Dahoud; Hofmann, Draxler, Brandt; Waldschmidt
The visitors have no notable absentees heading into the international break. 25-year-old goalkeeper Gokhan Akkan is the only uncapped player in the squad picked by manager Gunes. Turkey are expected to mirror Germany’s 4-2-3-1 formation on Wednesday, with Ugurcan Cakir starting between the sticks.
The three-time capped custodian will seek protection from a backline comprising of 21-year-old Mert Muldur and Umut Meras as the full-backs on the right and left sides respectively, while Caglar Soyuncu and Merih Demiral line up at the centre, although Ozan Kabak is also an option.
Former FC Schalke star Kaan Ayhan has mostly been used as a defensive midfielder in the national team setup and that is unlikely to change on Wednesday. He will most likely be partnered by Ozan Tufan, with in-form man Hakan Calhanoglu slotting in as the No. 10 and looking to create chances. Although, 19-year-old Orkun Kokcu is also an option.
Emre Kilinc and Ahmed Kutucu ought to be the two wide men who will look to support star striker and vice-captain Burak Yilmaz in the final third of the pitch.
Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Cakir; Muldur, Soyuncu, Demiral, Meras; Ayhan, Tufan; Kilinc, Calhanoglu, Kutucu; Yilmaz
- This will be the 21st meeting between Germany and Turkey. Die Mannschaft have the clear upper-hand in the head-to-head record, having won 14 of their 20 previous matches, with Turkey winning just three (D3).
- Germany have won each of their previous three meetings against Turkey. During this run, they have scored three goals in each game, while conceding just thrice in total.
- Joachim Low’s side are unbeaten in their last seven fixtures across all competitions (W4 D3). They have scored 19 goals during this period while managing to keep three clean sheets.
- Turkey have lost just one of their last eight fixtures, winning four of those (D3). The only defeat, however, came during the last month’s international break against Hungary.
- Only one of the last ten fixtures between Germany and Turkey have ended in a draw.
Player to Watch
The 26-year-old attacking midfielder has been in top form for AC Milan since football restarted post lockdown, playing a key role in the Rossoneri‘s impressive run of form towards the end of the 2019/20 campaign and the start of the 2020/21 season.
In six games across all competitions this season at club level, Calhanoglu has €50. He will be hoping to carry that form to the international stages and help Turkey register a victory against Germany.
Germany 1-1 Turkey
Germany have had the rub of the green in their most recent meetings against Turkey. However, with Jogi Low set to field a second-string side on Wednesday, the Crescent and Stars will fancy their chances. The Hard Tackle is predicting this one to end in a closely fought 1-1 stalemate.