Germany national team will be looking for the third successive triumph over England when the two sides square off at Olympiastadion in Berlin on Saturday evening. Both managed will be looking to test some new players, but at the same time attempt to record a positive result in their opening fixture of the year 2016.
After showing a great deal of potential at recent major tournaments, Germany finally managed to go all the way at the 2014 World Cup and they are now the team to beat in Europe. Die Mannschaft did not have the easiest of jobs in the Euro 2016 qualifiers, but they eventually secured the first place in the standings and were later pitted against Ukraine, Poland and Northern Ireland at the tournament finals. Germany did not end last year in the best possible manner seeing that they were beaten by Euro 2016 hosts France and they will want to make amends for said loss when they take on England, a team they defeated in last two meetings. Coach Joachim Low, who is being linked with several managerial jobs in the Premier League, did well to rejuvenate the squad after a number of star players retired after lifting the trophy in Brazil, but he opted to leave Bundesliga starlets Leroy Sane and Joshua Kimmich out of the squad this time out. Mario Gomez keeps his place after the impressive start to the Besiktas spell, whereas Mario Gotze is included in spite of lack of action at club level.
Wolfsburg forward Max Kruse was dropped from the squad due to unprofessional behaviour and his place on the plane to France is now in serious doubt.
Manchester United midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger suffered a partially torn knee ligament and he is definitely out of March friendlies.
England were thoroughly impressive in the Euro 2016 qualifying campaign having been the only side to claim maximum points from each and every game, but ten wins in as many matches will mean nothing if the Three Lions again fail to prove their worth at the tournament finals. Roy Hodgson’s side have been placed in a pretty difficult group, alongside the likes of Wales, Russia and Slovakia, and that is why the manager wants his charges to test their skills against Germany and Netherlands in the two March friendlies. With Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy both in excellent form and Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge returning into action recently, Hodgson appears to be spoilt for options in the final third, but he needs to find the best system to ensure he gets the most out of a situation that has not been common in the past. England did lose to Spain in their previous away fixture, but with the key men now in pretty good form, the Three Lions may be able to upset the World Cup holders.
Leicester City hotshot Danny Drinkwater received his first ever call-up, while Spurs starlets Dele Alli and Eric Dier keep their places.
Joe Hart, Raheem Sterling and Ryan Bertrand have withdrawn through injury, with Tom Heaton the only player to have been added to the squad.
Key Factors to Consider
- Germany have three wins in last four meetings with England
- Both teams have scored in four of their last five meetings
- England recorded a 2-1 win on their last visit to Germany
- Die Mannschaft conceded 12 goals in last 8 home fixtures
- England won all ten Euro 2016 qualifiers
While Germany will be eager to make amends for the 2-0 loss to France, England arrive in Berlin determined to prove they are good enough to mount a serious title challenge at the Euro 2016. We expect to see an open game at Olympiastadion and everything suggests both sides will get on the scoresheet.
Verdict: Both teams to score
Best Odds: 10/11
Bookmaker: William Hill