One of the big questions that Germany fans have heading into next year’s World Cup is if Die Mannschaft will be ready.
With Hansi Flick only having about a year to work with his player pool, some critics are skeptical Germany will be able to make an immediate impact — including former Bayern Munich defender Markus Babbel.
“I don’t think we’ll be ready for the World Cup; I think it will take a little bit more time because we have problems in some positions,” Babbel told the betting site NetBet. “We are strong in the midfield area, but we have no fullbacks or a proper striker like Harry Kane, who I wished we had. He was criticized early on by the English press in the tournament, but I have always said that I wish he were playing for Germany because he’s what we need.”
Babbel thinks Germany has plenty of top-shelf options to play on the wing, but just needs a true No.9 to complete the puzzle, while also lacking some consistency at center-back.
“Timo Werner, Serge Gnabry and Leroy Sane are all top wingers, but they are not strikers so it’s a big problem that we have,” Babbel said. “Also, our center-backs, some of them are ok but they aren’t top class, so I think it will take time and 2024 will be the target.”
Even with those reasons for doubt, Babbel believes Hansi Flick is the right man for the job — and could have things turned around for the 2024 European Championships.
“I do not think the German people could take Joachim Low being in charge anymore and I think the supporters wanted a change,” said Babbel. “Everyone will be happy now Hansi Flick is in charge because he did such an amazing job at Bayern Munich. He has a credit now, even supporters from Borussia Dortmund and Hamburg are happy because they could not see Joachim Low being in charge anymore. He will get time, but we are Germany, so we need results because we are one of the strongest countries in the history of football. We are in a similar position to Italy a couple of years ago, we have to create a new team and that will be the target for Hansi Flick.”