With Jogi Löw resting key players for this friendly, we saw a Germany match without any Bayern Munich players. This is probably a relief for many, considering that Bayern has basically played non-stop since the restart of play following the Coronavirus lockdown. Luca Waldschmidt’s first-half goal was just enough to earn a victory for Die Mannschaft over the Czech Republic. Here are our awards.
Jersey Swap: Jiří Pavlenka
Pavlenka was outstanding tonight. Had it not been for him, Germany would have likely been up 3-0 or more at halftime. In total the Werder Bremen keeper had seven saves. The relentless German attack through everything they could at him, including on the counter, but Pavlenka stood tall and made the saves he needed to in order to give his team a chance.
Der Bomber: Luca Waldschmidt
Waldschmidt tested the Czech defense all night. His well-timed runs made it difficult for the backline to stay with him. Waldschmidt got Germany on the board with one of these runs after a shot was parried away by Pavlenka. Max recycled the ball into the six-yard box and Waldschmidt was there to put it in. Waldschmidt was also a great target up front for the long balls. Whether it was to start a counter or when the defense just needed to clear the ball, he was able to take the ball out of the air and give Germany some time on the ball in their attacking half.
Fußballgott: Florian Neuhaus
Neuhaus came so close to scoring on multiple occasions tonight. He squared up on the ball a few times and fell victim to either a Pavlenka save or being denied by the post. The Borussia Mönchengladbach midfielder played well on both sides of the ball. His late runs into the box were often unmarked and his shots were fairly accurate. His first attempt caused Pavlenka to spill the save and led to the Germany goal after the ball was recycled back in. A late shot attempt looked great, and would have beat Pavlenka, but hit the corner of the post.
Der Kaiser: Antonio Rüdiger
Rüdiger had a solid outing for Germany tonight. He was the star of the German backline, which has been known to give up goals in recent outings. Rüdiger used his physicality to body attackers off the ball. He also made some key steps to intercept the ball and stop any attempt at a Czech counterattack. Although not a super flashy performance, the Chelsea defender outclassed his opponents tonight.
Meister of the Match: Philipp Max
Although he only played 68 minutes, I thought Max was the best player for Germany tonight. Right from the start, he was playing dangerous balls into the box. He earned an assist on the only goal of the game after pouncing on the loose ball in the box and driving a low cross in front of the face of goal that found Waldschmidt, who kicked it in. After the goal, Max kept up the great passes, however his teammates were not able to finish the job. To be honest, Max probably deserved two or three assists tonight.