September 19, 2021

Germany, all about the team

The national team. Or, in German in the text, “the national team”.

  • The calendar (French time)

June 15: Germany v France, 9 p.m., in Munich

June 19: Germany v Portugal, 6 p.m., in Munich

June 23: Germany v Hungary, 9 p.m., in Munich

The first two of each group as well as the four best thirds qualify.

  • The team that should play (to be updated)

Manuel Neuer – Robin Gosens, Antonio Rüdiger, Mats Hummels, Lukas Klostermann – Joshua Kimmich, Thomas Müller, Leon Goretzka, Toni Kroos – Timo Werner, Kevin Volland.

Thirteenth participation in a final phase, in sixteen editions (a record). European Champion in 1972, 1980 and 1996 (also a record, jointly held with Spain).

  • The coach: Joachim Löw

Joachim Löw, during training for the German selection, at the end of March.

“Everything has an end, except the sausage, which has two. “ Inspired by popular wisdom, this German expression can therefore also be applied to the mandate of Joachim Löw. At 61, the coach will play his last competition with the Mannschaft this summer. The approaching end of a very long mandate that began fifteen years earlier – unparalleled longevity in football in Europe … and barely beaten by a few months by Chancellor Angela Merkel, also on departure. First assistant to Jürgen Klinsmann (2004-2006), the man from the Black Forest was consecrated in 2014: world champion in Brazil. Before the frustration of the next World Cup, in 2018: elimination in the first round in Russia.

As soon as the Euro ends, coach Löw will be replaced in his post by Hansi Flick (56), until then coach of Bayern Munich. The two men have one thing in common: during their professional football career, neither of them had had the honor of being called up for the senior German squad.

Toni Kroos, during the Nations League match against Switzerland, on October 13, 2020, in Cologne.

If you appreciate the painter Caspar David Friedrich (1774-1840) and his landscapes as far as the eye can see, you may know that he was born in Greifswald, in northern Germany. If you are passionate about energy issues, you may know that near this city of some 59,000 inhabitants the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline from Russia is ending – and the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline will end, provided that the project is coming to an end. Otherwise, the town of Greifswald has local pride Toni Kroos. The Real Madrid and Mannschaft midfielder remains an exception. The only one, in the current German team, to come from a Land from the former GDR, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. The only footballer also to have inspired the director Manfred Oldenburg, already author of documentaries on Willy Brandt or the Krupp family.

With Euro 2021, and these three first round matches scheduled for Munich, Kroos will play his first international competition in Germany. He will be 34 years old in 2024: that year, the Euro will take place entirely in his native country.

  • It happened at the Euro

The “Schwarz-Rot-Gold” team was that of the first “golden goal”. A goal from striker Oliver Bierhoff to win the final of Euro 1996 – six years after German reunification -, in London, in the monumental Wembley stadium, against the Czech Republic (2-1). And so three years after the institution of this rule according to which the slightest goal scored during extra time immediately put an end to the match. This rule ceased to exist in 2004.

Oliver Bierhoff, author of a double in this day of June 1996, continues to frequent the football fields. But this time in the costume of an executive, as director general of the German Football Federation (6 million dismissed before the crisis due to Covid-19, all the same).

There was of course the Elysée Treaty, in 1963. But long before this Franco-German reconciliation enterprise, several municipalities had already undertaken cooperation on both sides of the Rhine after the end of the Second World War. First Franco-German twinning in 1950, between the municipality of Montbéliard (Doubs) and that of Ludwigsburg (Bade-Wurtenberg), in FRG. In France, several cities also forged links with the GDR throughout its existence. Often left-wing municipalities, such as Montreuil-sous-Bois with Cottbus (1959) or Lille with Erfurt (1988), to name just two.

The German Federal Republic was one of the founders of the Eurovision Song Contest in 1956, along with the “Benelux”, France, Italy and Switzerland. That is to say the same countries, except the Swiss Confederation, as for the creation, five years earlier, of the European Coal and Steel Community. The GDR, for its part, has never participated in either of these creations.

Since the launch of Eurovision, only two victories for Germany: in 1982 with Nicole (for A bit of peace, “A little peace”), then in 2010 with Lena (for Satellite, which does not require translation).

A conscientious athlete, it is well known, loves pasta. Across the Rhine, a good tasting of spaetzle (with more or less eggs for ingredients) could therefore be quite suitable. To be served with game, for example, for meat lovers. And a good glass ofApfelschorle, to keep his spirits and not to fall, precisely, in apples. Otherwise, we can also give you the same advice as in 2018 and in 2019 under other circumstances. And with respect, this time, for barrier gestures.