With Germany having been unceremoniously booted out of a major tournament for the second consecutive time, it’s time for some major introspection. Not even the players are keeping quiet this time, as Bayern Munich star Thomas Muller explicitly blamed the team’s elimination on poor tactics from the coach. He’s not the only one to do do so — Atalanta left-back Robin Gosens feels exactly the same way.
Speaking on Florian Plettenberg’s podcast Meine Bayern Woche, Gosens outlined where it all went wrong for the Germans (click for the whole thread):
(1/3) ️Robin #Gosens in #MeineBayernWoche : „Ich glaube der größte Punkt, warum es schiefgegangen ist, war, dass wir in jedem Spiel immer zurückgelegen haben. Wir mussten uns immer zurückkämpfen, das geht vielleicht ein- oder zweimal gut, aber nicht auf Dauer.”— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) July 2, 2021
I think the biggest point on why it went wrong was that we were always behind in every game. We always had to fight back, that might work once or twice, but not in the long run.
If you have to be afraid of conceding a goal every time you attack, if you don’t do certain things well, then certain things don’t fit. Actually every attack we got against us always resulted in a goal or a dangerous situation.
We have to be reproached for not having accessed what would have helped us to get far. If you only win 1 out of 4 games, you are not entitled to any more at the end of the day. That’s how honest we have to be, even if the truth sometimes hurts.
This is similar to Thomas Muller’s criticisms, where he derided the coach’s passive approach to games. Germany had switched to three-man backline right before the tournament, ostensibly for defensive stability. However, the way the team played, they couldn’t even keep a clean sheet against Latvia. It was a tactical decision that baffled pundits and fans alike, and has been criticized by coaches and former players. Now, it seems like the dressing room was well aware of the problems too.
In any case, Hansi Flick is the exact opposite of defensive, and his Bayern team made a record number of comeback wins last season. Maybe he can fix the problems pointed out by Gosens and Muller, and get the Germans back on top before the World Cup. The talent is undoubtedly there, so let’s wait and hope for a Germany resurgence.