Speaking in a press conference after Germany’s main session on Wednesday afternoon, Joachim Löw highlighted Die Mannschaft’s successful training camp in Italy, the preparations for their World Cup opener vs. Mexico, and the good first impressions on the squads base camp in Watutinki, Russia.
After a grueling, yet successful training camp in South Tyrol, Italy, Low explained, the squad is going to begin fine-tuning their tactics and shape ahead of the Mexico match on Sunday:
After the training camp in South Tyrol and the test games, it was important to get a little rest over the weekend. The team lacked dynamic especially in the test games, but that’s not unusual after the many hard training sessions. Here in Watutinki, we’re now working on polishing up, especially with respect to tactics.
Germany‘s warm-up friendlies against Austria and Saudi Arabia didn't quite showcase the true caliber of the squad overall, but rather they gave Löw and his coaching staff an opportunity to see where he can utilize different players in different situations. Despite the underwhelming results in both of the friendlies, Löw is confident that the preparations in camp for the Mexico match have been on point thus far:
Mexico is a fast and technically solid opponent. They will demand everything of us, but we will find the appropriate solutions. I’m optimistic that we’ll present ourselves well -- the team will step up this week. Everything is focused on Sunday. We trained very intensely today [Wednesday]. All the players kept up very well, though. Julian Draxler and Sami Khedira had to interrupt the session briefly, but they are not injured. We had some problems with the pitch, which could be cut a few millimeters shorter to minimize the risk of injury.
In what was perhaps a bit of foreshadowing for how Löw will lineup on Sunday vs. Mexico, too, he highlighted what Timo Werner brings to the squad and his versatility makes him a valuable weapon:
Timo is a striker who is very valuable to us for his speed. He poses a threat for every opponent. He helps us so that we’re hard to calculate, since we can go many ways on the pitch. We are hoping that Timo has a good tournament
Despite the grass being a bit long on the training pitch, Löw and his staff are quite satisfied with the accommodations in Watutinki, where the team will be for the duration of the tournament:
At first glance, we’re very happy with our accommodations in Watutinki. We have here all the means for readying ourselves for the tasks ahead. The grounds are situated in an optimal location; we’ll have short trips to the games. Everything is here so that we can prepare ourselves in peace and complete concentration.