Euro 2016 Qualifying Campaign Index


Saturday, 11 October 2014

Euro 2016 Group D Qualifier

"I can't be unhappy because we created a lot of goalscoring chances.
We just weren't able to put the ball in the back of the net."

Arkadiusz Milik 51', Sebastian Mila 88'

German lose to Poland, and suffer their first competitive defeat for over two years.

Expert opinion is that while Germany created multiple chances, they failed to finish them off, thus indicative that it was not the game plan nor the tactics that were at fault, but simply the way the game of football sometimes turns out.

Historic defeat against Poland
Poland beat World Champions on historic night in Warsaw

Germany knocked off their perch by Poland
Joachim Löw looks ahead but needs Germany to start scoring again

"We created numerous chances but didn't manage to score any. We lost but it is not a dramatic defeat. Life will not be any harder after this loss. This defeat will not put us in trouble in the qualifiers - we've been beaten but we still have a good chance of qualifying for the finals. We have some new young players in the team and they have to gain experience. Tonight everything worked well except we did not convert our chances - from more than 20 attempts we failed to score." from

Poland stun world champions Germany with first win

"Obviously we are very disappointed," said Germany coach Joachim Löw. "But I can't say much about the team. The only thing is that we were a bit sloppy with our chances in the first half.
"Also in the second half we played well and created chances but Poland scored with their first dangerous ball," said Löw.
Joachim Löw eyes response after Poland upset
Germany lacked the finishing touch against Poland - Löw
"One little thing went wrong: we were too wasteful with our chances. The finishing touch was missing, that's why we did not score a goal.
"But I was absolutely satisfied with our style of play. We created many chances and Poland scored with their first dangerous attack.
"Maybe we did not succeed in using the width of the field in the final minutes. In the first half we lacked depth in our play.
"After a loss you must look for a reaction. We have to get our strength back and we must win the match on Tuesday. Republic of Ireland will play in the same way, they will be playing defensively."
Löw: Euro qualification will not be a problem
"I don't see things as being too dramatic, I think Poland were very committed and highly motivated against the world champions," said Löw, who included six of the side which started the World Cup final.
"We wanted to take the three points, but you could see in training that things weren't happening automatically.
"The team's attitude and concentration were absolutely fine, but the young players have to gain experience.
"We lost for the first time after 33 (qualification) matches, that can happen from time to time."
Report and player ratings - from

Joachim Löw: "I don't see any major problems" - Jogi speaks to
After offering his compliments to Poland, he played down German's first defeat in a qualifier since 2007 "That can happen sometimes. We will try and learn from it. I'm confident that we will make up for it though." and pointed out that Germany had created 28 shots, a figure that they don't often reach.

Bellarabi the Silver Lining for beaten World Champions
Jogi said about his debutant:
"I was pleased with Karim. He got into the game more and more and had some good moments. He was very lively and hands-on for his first international match. I'm thoroughly satisfied. He improved as the game went on and also provided some danger going forward."

"What's not surprising is that every team wants to give that extra few percent against the World Champions. There have also been more radical changes to the squad since the World Cup than I had hoped for. Not only have three players retired, but four or five players are missing who have always played and have helped shape the team, players like Mesut Özil, Sami Khedira and of course Bastian Schweinsteiger. Over the next two years, our young players have to have experiences that they will learn from. Life hasn't gotten any harder, despite the huge disappointment of this defeat." and concluded:

"Life is much, much nicer than before the World Cup."

Jogi's comment appeared correct as in some respects the German media were tame in comparison to their behaviour in the past, seemingly appreciating that this is a new team still to find their feet, with only the odd over-exaggerated headline.
German media keeps calm after loss to Poland in Euro 2016 qualifiers

Jogi, was ist bloß mit unseren Weltmeistern los? - although Bild appeared to forget their stance that Jogi had earned the right no longer to be questioned!

Experte Lehmann attackiert Löw vor laufender Kamera - 12 October 2014
In the post-match analysis however, it became apparent that RTL were determined to 'out-attackiert' their broadcasting predecessors, grabbing maximum exposure (probably the main intention) from those papers who wished to resume an antagonistic agenda. With Jens Lehmann assuming the Oliver Kahn mantle of chief prosecutor, Saturday night's interview appeared to infer Jogi should simply being able to pop down his local high street and find some fresh Lahm waiting for him in the supermarket aisle.
Post-match interview and analysis on RTL

Excerpts from the post-match press conference from and

Starting Line-Up:
Manuel Neuer, Antonio Rüdiger (Max Kruse), Jerome Boateng, Mats Hummels, Erik Durm, Christoph Kramer (Julian Draxler), Toni Kroos, Karim Bellarabi, Mario Götze, Andre Schürrle (Lukas Podolski), Thomas Müller.

Training, National Stadium, Warsaw, 10 October 2014

  Der Tag in Warschau: Ankunft und Abschlusstraining

Press Conference, Westin Hotel, Warsaw, 10 October 2014, with Lukas Podolski

Joachim Löw flew into Warsaw as World Champion, his first match abroad since Germany's World Cup triumph, and went straight to his DFB press conference. He said he would not have thought of the relevance of Warsaw (scene of their Euro 2016 exit to Italy) unless it had been mentioned. Of course, he added, that day had been disappointing, but they had learned from the defeat, and benefitted from it in Brazil, however painful it might have been at the time.

Turning to his opponents, Jogi said he expected a "feisty encounter. Poland are our biggest rivals in our group for top spot, alongside Ireland. Poland are especially good in attack thanks to skipper Robert Lewandowski."

Germany wary of Lewandowski's Polish Sparkle

"The fans aren't coming to the stadium to applaud the World Champions. The Poles won't be giving away any gifts."
Löw: "Podolski could start"
I should say that just because Lukas has come to the press conference, it doesn't mean that he'll be automatically starting. It's clear that he hasn't played many games for Arsenal this season. But Lukas has always shown that he can bring dynamism to the game. It's possible that Lukas could start the game, especially considering our attacking options at the moment. But it's also a possibility that he could come on during the game. I'll make a decision after our final training session.
Claiming Germany scalp bigger motivation, says Löw
Joachim Löw says Germany must adapt to their status as world champions when his new-look side face Poland in Saturday's Euro 2016 qualifier, with opponents increasingly eager to topple them.
"Opponents are giving that little bit extra against us in the hope of beating the world champions and neither of these games will be easy for us," said Löw.

"Despite the injury problems, we have a good axis. Manuel Neuer, Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng are World Cup winners. Toni Kroos and Mario Gotze also belong to this group."
"My plans have been thrown somewhat by the injury situation. I had expected Ozil to be here. I think we can put together a good team nonetheless. In the past, we've been better in October than in September." - from

Kroos und Kramer: Löws neue Zentrale
"[Toni Kroos] has gone from being a talented young player to a man, a regular player and an absolute leader."

Löw: Kruse nur aus sportlichen Gründen nicht bei WM
Jogi told the press conference that Max Kruse's omission from the World Cup was for 'sporting reasons' only."I had no need to rehabilitate him. The things reported played no role."He went on to say "We had in Miroslav Klose, Mario Gotze and Thomas Müller three players who could fill the position." and went on to say that Max had fought back well this season and had played a major role in Borussia Mönchengladbach's success. "He's a smart player who moves into space and surprises the opponent."- All players now with the squad are fit, including Andre Schürrle and Julian Draxler.
- Again praised assistant Thomas Schneider, very positive few days. Bringing his own ideas, but sure they can continue seamlessly from the time with Hansi Flick.
- Karim Bellarabi - had only one thought and that was that he wanted to play for Germany. Management team didn't have any influence on his decision. What makes him stand out is his movement, his skill, his ability to recognise open spaces and the fact that he can use one-twos to get forward.
- Poland tough opponents, as have already seen in May. Must watch their counter-attack and disrupt them.

Trainingsimpressionen - from - 8 October 2014

Özil ruled out for 10 to 12 weeks.
After complaining of discomfort in his knee on arrival in Frankfurt, Mesut Ozil was given a scan in Munich and ligament damage has been discovered. He will therefore miss Germany's next four matches.
Andre Schürrle was also absent from training, taking an individual session at the team hotel.

In an interview on, Jogi spoke about his Group D opponents, and coping in the months following the World Cup. - 8 October 2014
"We've played against Poland a couple of times already. They're a team that have fantastic players, and I'm not only talking about Robert Lewandowski and Lukasz Piszczek. A lot of their squad play in the Bundesliga and big leagues around the world. They know our players very well and have plenty of experience. They're a side in their prime and they've made a lot of progress. On top of that, Ireland and Scotland are very powerful teams too. The group is no foregone conclusion. We can get through it, but can't take anything for granted."
"The players only have a short pre-season and don't have much of a break. On top of that there are a few changes in the team and we had five or six players who pulled out due to injury. Those are the problems we'll be dealing with in the coming weeks. I experienced something similar in 2006 and 2010. After a World Cup, which is draining for the players, there are always times when someone is unavailable for a short time due to injury. With that in mind I'm gearing up to make changes in October and November and we'll have to find a way to bridge over those months. Towards the end of the qualifying campaign next year I think we can try and get the team into form ahead of the next tournament."

"Jogi Löw und ich ticken ganz ähnlich", an interview with Thomas Schneider.
With Frankfurter Allgemeine calling him "Der kleine Löw"

Thomas Schneider joins the management team for training for the first time, 7 October 2014

'A step forward': Thomas Schneider starts work with World Cup winners
"I think he's a brilliant coach, who has his own new ideas that will do us good," explained Löw. "I'm sure we can pick up where we left off with Hansi Flick without a hitch."
Der Tag in Frankfurt - from

My Profile Page on Thomas Schneider with past photographs of him at Jogi from their time at Stuttgart.

Draxler absent from DFB-Team with a Cold - 7 October 2014
Julian Draxler has not travelled to join the team today due to illness, but is not yet totally ruled out of the two matches.

Löw: "We should have a say in the Euro 2016 title too" - 6 October 2014
In a new interview on Jogi talks about his recent trip to London, life as a World Champion and the upcoming game against Poland.

"When we have competitive fixtures, so when we're playing for points in qualifying matches, then the national team takes priority. There cannot be two opinions about the matter." he said. When asked about injuries to Mats Hummels, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Sami Khedira and Benedikt Höwedes, he said the theory that the World Cup was to blame did not hold out, as they had also suffered the previous season. However he explained that the delicate balance between training and a game, against rest and individual care is one that is made in discussions with individual players and the clubs themselves.

On his Polish opponents:
"It's usually tight when we face Poland. The games have often helped push us in the right direction; we all remember the 1-0 win in Dortmund at the 2006 World Cup. Just like back then, Poland have a lot of individual quality, vast experience and a distinctive team spirit. Robert Lewandowski is an exceptional footballer; he's one of the three best strikers in the world for me. He showed that again during Bayern's game against Hannover on Saturday (two Lewandowski goals in a 4-0 win). Not many players know how to command the ball under pressure like he can. He's clinical in front of goal and he also has technical ability. He is a complete striker. However, Poland aren't just about Lewandowski. It wouldn't be enough to just take him out the game. We have to deal with the whole team, who will also be roared on by their home supporters in Warsaw."

Germany coach Joachim Low defends Kevin Grosskreutz omission

"I spoke about Kevin to Jürgen and we agreed that it makes more sense for him right now to use the international break to work on himself and also to find his feet again for his club," Low said on the German Football Association (DFB) website.
"When he then joins us again, the national team will also benefit."
"Both of these games in October are extremely important," he said. "If we are successful against Poland and then afterwards against Ireland, then we could give ourselves a cushion.
"These are opponents who are going to be our biggest rivals for top spot and we want to take our chance.
"Nevertheless, there is still a long way to go after this and nobody has ever qualified after only three matches.
"We are the world champions, but that does not guarantee us any victories by any stretch of the imagination."
Joachim Low believes Arsenal's Mesut Ozil is returning to his best
"Mesut is in a good way [on the right track], and he has recently had really strong performances for Arsenal. His form is improving."
Low also praised the contribution of Chelsea's Andre Schurrle, saying: "The World Cup win did him a lot of good -- he was strong before, but has even more confidence now."
He also backed striker Lukas Podolski, who came on as a late substitute for Arsenal on Sunday, saying: "Lukas' situation [of not getting into the Arsenal team] is difficult -- but he will cope with it, I am sure of that."
In the interview Jogi also confirmed that Manuel Neuer will be his captain for the matches against Poland and Ireland, calling him a worthy captain of the team in Bastian Schweinsteiger's absence.

Also discussed was:
Thomas Schneider - was not the case that he needed to acquaint himself with Thomas, his new assistant, as had been one of his players at Vfb Stuttgart. Will bring his own ideas which will benefit the team.
Max Kruse - recall purely down to sporting reasons. Had different ideas for the World Cup, but has always said Max had ability to increase their potential in attack. Has had a superb start to the season.
Karim Bellarabi - "He's someone we've had our eye on for a while. His development has been remarkable. He's incredibly quick and his acceleration is phenomenal. He has also improved defensively. I like how he works without the ball. I'm convinced that he can be a good option for us. I'm looking forward to welcoming him to the team on Tuesday and meeting him personally."

Klopp einigte sich mit Löw: Großkreutz-Pause abgesprochen - 4 October 2014
Jürgen Klopp reveals he asked Jogi not to call up Kevin Großkreutz for the October qualifiers.

The only new nomination to the squad announced today is Karim Bellarabi. Max Kruse receives a recall to the squad. - 2 October 2014

Bellarabi makes latest Germany squad
Bellarabi's meteoric rise into Germany squad

"Karim Bellarabi has earned this chance after some excellent performances for his club," Low said. "He is unbelievably strong in the one-on-ones and is an excellent alternative in our attack."
"We must be aware that European qualification is not automatic, even for the world champions," Low said, with Germany second in Group D on goal difference to Poland after one match. "I am convinced of the quality of the team and we have the opportunity in these games to set ourselves apart from the competition, so these two matches are very important for us going forward."
Talking of Poland, he said:"They have great individual quality, a lot of experience and a strong team spirit. Robert Lewandowski is an exceptional footballer, for me he is one of the three best strikers in the world. His ball control is phenomenal in almost any situation" and describes him as the 'complete' player, but added "Poland is not only Lewandowski It is not enough only to take him out of the game" and went on to explain that the Polish players have extensive experience from leagues throughout Europe and will be keen to take on the German side in their home stadium. - from

Full squad:
Goalkeepers:  Manuel Neuer (Bayern München), Roman Weidenfeller (Borussia Dortmund), Ron-Robert Zieler (Hannover 96)
Defenders:  Jérome Boateng (Bayern München),Erik Durm, Matthias Ginter, Mats Hummels (all Borussia Dortmund), Shkodran Mustafi (FC Genoa), Antonio Rüdiger (VfB Stuttgart), Sebastian Rudy (1899 Hoffenheim)
Midfielders:  Karim Bellarabi (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (FC Schalke 04), Christoph Kramer (Borussia Mönchengladbach), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Thomas Müller (Bayern München), Mesut Özil, Lukas Podolski (both Arsenal)André Schürrle (Chelsea)
Forwards:  Mario Götze (Bayern München)Max Kruse (Borussia Mönchengladbach)

Last updated 14 October 2014
With thanks to everyone on the Group, especially Lucille, Elkfriede and Silke.
Anything else you think I should include on this page? Let me know!