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‘Very upset’: Flick calls for Germany reboot after humiliating World Cup exit

The Guardian
The Guardian
 2022-12-01
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Hansi Flick watches from the sidelines during Germany’s victory against Costa Rica. Photograph: Shaun Botterill/FIFA/Getty Images

Hansi Flick said Germany had “fulfilled our duty” after exiting the World Cup at the earliest stage despite a chaotic 4-2 victory against Costa Rica.

Germany’s fate at this World Cup had been set by their opening game against Japan , where they had 26 shots but still lost to the eventual group winners. For Flick this was a symptom of a much wider malaise that speaks to the need for another reboot of the entire German coaching structure. “I don’t care about different teams, it is all up to us,” he said. “If you look at the matches and number of goals, it is our fault. I am convinced we had sufficient chances and possibilities against Japan in the first half and also against Spain, you have to use your chances. It would have been a different situation.

Pos Team P GD Pts
1 Japan 3 1 6
2 Spain 3 6 4
3 Germany 3 1 4
4 Costa Rica 3 -8 3

“There were a lot of individual mistakes and they make me very angry. The first half made me very upset and I told the team I was upset.”

Flick also blamed the lack of available time to groove his own tactical patterns. “Against Spain we worked very well, we had a compact defence, but you also have to have the automatisms, you have to train different actions and we did not have a lot of time – but it is not down to that.”

In a significant turn, there was a nod to England and Spain as examples of state-of-the-art coaching methods. “I believe that for the future of German football we also need to do things differently with training. For years we have been talking about new goalkeepers, new wing-backs, what was always good in German football was we were able to defend well.

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“We need the basics. Spain is very good in the defence and they focus on training of young players. I think for the future and the next 10 years it will be very important to focus on the new generation of footballers.”

Jamal Musiala, in Chelsea’s academy till he was 16, was a lone star in this campaign, although Flick also noted pointedly that his development had taken place elsewhere. “It is difficult after such a match to single out one player but Jamal and what he showed today, it is unfortunate such a player cannot continue to play in the tournament.

“He is fantastic, his skill in the tackles, the one on ones, he is outstanding and the next couple of years we do have talents in our team, we are headed in the right direction – but we have to see, we have to focus on the training.

“Jamal has been trained in England, not Germany.”

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