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World Cup Preview and Predictions: The Definitive Guide To Germany Heading into Qatar

A renewed Germany will seek its fifth star in Qatar.

Germany arrives in Qatar with the mission to erase the bad image shown in 2018, when, as defending champions, they were eliminated in the first round. The European team has won four championships and is eager to demonstrate that they are the best.

In the midst of a renewal process, coach Hansi Flick has added new elements to the team and is confident that Germany can return to the top four of the tournament.

Germany makes its debut on November 23 against Japan, then faces Spain on November 27, and closes its group stage against Costa Rica on December 1.

Strenghts: Mixed Attacking Play-style

Germany is missing a strong center forward in their squad; in fact, since the retirement of Miroslav Klose, the team has been lacking a world class striker. Hansi Flick has turned this problem into an opportunity, by placing four versatile players in the attacking sector of the field.

In a 4-2-3-1 formation, Leroy Sané, Jamal Musiala, and Thomas Müller play as wingers and attacking midfielders. They are able to switch positions during the match efficiently, creating a surprise factor when attacking. Usually, the opposing defense does not know how to close the gaps.

Chelsea's Kai Havertz, originally an attacking midfielder, plays as a striker. On many occasions, he drops down the field to allow any of the three aforementioned players to get into the box for a shot on goal.

All German forwards have good finishing with both legs, handle the ball well, are mostly fast, and are tactically disciplined. On the bench, they have very good replacement options such as Serge Gnabry, Karim Adeyemi, and 17-year-old Youssoufa Moukoko.

Weaknesses: Defense

Germany conceded nine goals in six games in the last Nations League, and that speaks to their fragile defense when it comes to containing opponents.

We can say that the only world-class defender on the team is Antonio Rudiger (Real Madrid). Although the rest are good players, they do not offer guarantees in every game.

Niklas Süle has already enjoyed his best days with Bayern Munich, Nico Schlotterbeck is a good young talent who has yet to prove his worth. David Raum and Thilo Kehrer are far from being elite wing-backs.

Fortunately, the defensive problems can be corrected with a general like Manuel Neuer in goal, the great captain and commanding voice who will organize the defense throughout the match.

Player to watch: Joshua Kimmich

Joshua Kimmich is extremely versatile and has great qualities in both attacking and defensive roles. It is safe to say that the Bayern Munich player perfectly reflects the modern midfielder.

If necessary, Kimmich can be the element that brings balance to the team, winning the ball back in midfield and then distributing it intelligently to the most suitable sector. In the offensive phase, he brings speed and dynamism, attacking through the center or on the flanks. His mid-long range shooting is acceptable, and his crosses into the box are among the best.

There is no doubt: Kimmich is one of the best, if not the best, defensive midfielders in the world today.

Prediction: Semifinals

History has shown that when you least expect it, Germany has a great tournament. This was the case in their first conquest in 1954, when the "Miracle of Bern" took place.

Not much is said about Germany, but the truth is that most of them have world-class players, and many of them share a team with Bayern Munich, meaning that they understand each other perfectly on the pitch.

Regardless of whether they finish first or second, considering that Spain is also in Group E, Germany will overtake Belgium or Croatia in the Round of 16 and will be just one win away from reaching the semifinals.

The legendary Gary Lineker once said: "Football is a simple game: 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes and, in the end, the Germans always win." When the moment of truth arrives, it's hard to beat the Germans.