Germany v France: The view from the German camp

The last press conference on Friday saw Hansi Flick sitting alongside his new captain Ilkay Gündogan looking forward to the friendly with Japan, but three days later it was Rudi Völler taking questions from the assembled press ahead of Germany’s clash with France. Hansi Flick’s dismissal has thrust Völler into the limelight once again and here are the opinions of interim coach and skipper ahead of the match on Tuesday.

Rudi Völler:

“Tomorrow is a one-time thing for me. I feel it’s my duty to help out in this situation. But after that I’ll try to support the new coach as best I can. Regardless of tomorrow’s game, it is important that we find a successor relatively quickly. That will be the main task.

“The most important thing for tomorrow is to improve our defensive behaviour. France is clearly the best team in Europe at the moment. They have incredibly fast players in transition. We experienced against Japan what could happen when you lose the ball carelessly. We have a few ideas in mind, but I can’t say anything more specific right now.

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“We were eliminated from a World Cup in the group stage twice in a row. It’s obvious that something is wrong. However, even if it doesn’t seem like it to many people at the moment, we still have players who are incredibly creative. We have quick players. We have players who can play a successful European Championship next year. Nevertheless, France is of course the big favourite. My goal is for us to be one of the 5-8 teams that rank behind France.

“I don’t think we can blame a lack of effort recently. The team gave everything, but of course made too many mistakes. You can’t allow yourself to make mistakes like that against Japan France. The attitude is there and it will be there tomorrow too. The boys are fired up and we will try everything to make it really difficult for France.”

Ilkay Gündogan:

“The atmosphere in the team is currently a mix of sadness, frustration and disappointment. As a player, I have the feeling that I let Hansi down, to be completely honest. He was always focused, motivated and full of energy. Unfortunately, as a team, we didn’t manage to turn that into something.

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“The collective has always made the German national team strong. We now have many players at world-class level, but as a team we can’t get that on the pitch. The best teams are the ones that perform at 100% on the pitch. Mistakes happen, but we shouldn’t accept them and should fight them off. When I won the Champions League with City last year, I made a lot of mistakes, but my teammates and I were always ready to correct them.”

About Mathew Burt 1054 Articles
Former writer at and JustFootball, I've been doing my thing for Bundesliga Fanatic since 2015. A long-suffering Werder Bremen fan and disciple of the Germanic holy trinity...Bier. Wurst und Fußball