Germany Should Consider Starting a Different Striker

Germany drew 1-1 with Switzerland in their final Group A match in Frankfurt on Matchday 3 of the European Championships. Niclas Füllkrug scored the equalizer for the Germans in the dying minutes of the match after Switzerland had taken the lead in the first half.

The host nation thus finished at the top of their group and will likely face a more favourable opponent in the round of 16. However, after their impressive display in their first two matches, the Germans will be somewhat worried with their inability to beat the Swiss.
Kai Havertz Has Failed to Fire for Germany
Havertz has started as the centre-forward in each of Germany’s three group matches so far. However, it is Füllkrug who has scored a couple of goals coming in as a substitute, proving his effectiveness. This is a concerning piece of statistics for the 25-year-old German, who has failed to find the back of the net even against easier opponents.
Havertz, however, has been somewhat instrumental in exchanging passes with the wingers and midfielders in the final third – something he also does regularly at his club, Arsenal. However, as far as meeting crosses from the flanks or exhibiting that rapid touch inside the penalty box before finishing are concerned, Füllkrug scores above him.
Havertz has scored 17 goals in 49 matches for Die Mannschaft so far, while Füllkrug, the Borussia Dortmund striker, has scored 13 times in 19 matches for the national team.
This means that the 31-year-old striker easily has the better striker ate while playing for his nation. He might actually be expecting to start for Germany in its round of 16 clash. It remains to be seen whether Julian Nagelsmann decides to make any change in the starting XI in Germany’s next match.

Germany’s Midfielders Have Been Prolific So Far

İlkay Gündoğan, Jamal Musiala and Florian Wirtz have all scored so far for Germany in the competition, which is a very good sign. Emre Can has also found the back of the net once. Hence, the Germans should be confident enough ahead of their round of 16 clash.

Still, it is Havertz’s lack of decisiveness inside the final third that might continue to worry the hosts. They will need goals from their front man in the knock-out matches and cannot afford him to be short of confidence, either. Their full-backs like Joshua Kimmich, Maximilian Mittelstädt and David Raum are well capable of playing crosses from the flanks and hence, having Füllkrug from the start should enhance their chance of scoring a goal.

Germany’s main tactic will still be playing a lot of passes in the middle and final thirds. However, should that plan not work, they will have to resort to playing crosses from the flanks, with the centre-forward being the target. Dropping Havertz should decrease their efficiency in passing, but it might still help to make them more lethal and incisive with a direct style. It will be Nagelsmann’s call to make eventually. It will be interesting to see the approach he adopts while selecting his first XI.

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