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Two World Cup winners meet to show their mettle ahead of Russia

Last updated: March 21, 2018 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Friday, 19:45
Venue: Esprit Arena
Coverage: BT Sport 3
Home Team Form: WWWDD
Away Team Form: WWWWD
Last Meeting: Spain 0 – 1 Germany
Competition: International Friendly

In perhaps the most interesting of the friendly fixtures over the next week, Germany host Spain in Düsseldorf. The two recent World Cup winners – Spain in 2010 and Germany in 2014 – will likely go far in this summer’s tournament and it will be interesting to see which team look more likely winners.

Germany have had some difficult defeats to Spain in recent times. Before winning the World Cup in 2014, die Mannschaft were knocked out of the World Cup and the Euros by La Rojo in 2010 and 2008 respectively. That was during Spain’s total domination of world football but the landscape looks a little different now. Germany’s emphatic World Cup win in Brazil, followed by an undeserved exit in the semi-finals of the Euros in France in 2016, has cemented their place as one of the best teams in the World, while Spain have declined. The depth of the German team is awesome, especially in midfield and defence. Up front, Timo Werner is quickly emerging as one of the best strikers in the world at just 22 years of age. Strolling to qualification in the group stage, the only concern for manager Löw at this stage is the tough decision on which players to leave out, such is the talent at his disposal.

Spanish manager Julen Lopetegui also has bags of talent at his disposal, but Spain aren’t quite the beast of international football they were earlier in the century. A cursory glance at the squad shows that they could win any match and any competition though and many Spanish fans are anticipating Russia as the tournament in which they return to greatness. Winning a qualification group containing Italy wasn’t going to be easy, but La Roja made it look so, effectively banishing Italy from the competition in the process. The big team news is that Chelsea star Álvaro Morata has been dropped from the squad, after a run of poor form for his club. Replacing him is ex-Chelsea man Diego Costa. Costa is flourishing once again at Athletico Madrid, showing Antonio Conte what he is missing and earning a recall to the Spanish squad in the process. Another Chelsea man, Marcos Alonso, has been called-up and has the chance to win his first cap. This is a great match up between two giants of international football, one in which we might get a glimpse of a potential winner of Russia 2018.

Team News

Marco Reus has been left out of the Germany squad, with manager Joachim Löw claiming it is in the player’s best interests.

Premier League stars Emre Can, Leroy Sane and Antonio Rüdiger have all earned call-ups.

The big omission from Spain’s squad is Álvaro Morata. The forward has struggled in the Premier League lately and has paid the price from his bad form.

Chelsea teammate Marcos Alonso has earned a call-up however, with the wing-back in with a shot of earning his first cap. Former Chelsea man Diego Costa has earned a recall.

Expected Line-Ups:

Germany (4-3-3): ter-Stegen, Boateng, Hummels, Kimmich, Hector, Khedira, Kroos, Can, Özil, Sane, Werner
Subs: Leno, Trapp, Ginter, Plattenhardy, Suele, Brandt, Draxler, Goretzka, Gündoğan, Müller, Rudy, Stindl, Gomez, Wagner
Injured: Neuer
Not available:
Spain (4-3-3): De Gea, Alba, Azpilicueta, Pique, Ramos, Isco, Silva, Iniesta, Asensio, Costa, Alcantara
Subs: Arrizabalaga, Reina, Alonso, Carvajal, Fernandez, Odriozola, Niguez, Parejo, Koke, Hernandez, Aspas, Rodrigo, Vazquez
Not available:

Head to Head

Last Five Competitive Meetings Between The Sides
Date Game Result Round First Goal-scorer
18/11/2014 Spain 0 – 1 Germany International Friendly Kroos 89′
07/07/2010 Germany 0 – 1 Spain FIFA World Cup Puyol 73′
29/06/2008 Germany 0 – 1 Spain UEFA European Championship Torres 33′
12/02/2003 Spain 3 – 1 Germany International Friendly Raul 30′
16/07/2000 Germany 4 – 1 Spain International Friendly Scholl 24′

Conclusion & Betting Tips

Spain have had the advantage over Germany in recent years overall, but Germany won the last match between the two back in 2014. Spain are back on the rise, while Germany are World Cup holders and the number one ranked team in the world at the moment.

While officially a friendly, both managers know this is a chance to feel out a potential challenger in Russia in the summer. We expect strong lineups and an exciting game then. Being played in Düsseldorf, it’s Germany who have the home advantage. We expect them to use it and make it difficult for Spain to play their possession based football. Germany are a good price to win due to the strength of the opposition, but we expect a win for the Nationalmannschaft, which you can get at Mr Green.