A second consecutive group stage exit at the Men’s World Cup has left Germany’s players stunned and heartbroken.
“There was dead silence in the dressing room,” Germany winger Jonas Hofmann said after the game (via Sport1). “Words fail me.”
Joshua Kimmich went one further. “It makes you think that these failures are connected to my person.” (There is such a thing as being too hard on oneself, Josh.)
Added Serge Gnabry: “This chance only comes every four years...it’s so bitter, I have no words.”
Football is an emotional roller-coaster, full of the most rapturous highs — as well as the most crushing of lows. Germany had to endure the latter on Thursday under the cruelest of circumstances. While they won their own game, they might have known in advance that Spain were down to Japan in the other — which meant they needed a massive goal difference that was increasingly impossible.
Worst yet, Japan’s win was finalized while Hansi Flick’s squad still had to trudge through several of their ten minutes of stoppage time — still five goals to the disadvantage while level on points with Spain.
“Today is the most difficult day of my career for me,” said Bayern Munich’s Joshua Kimmich (via Sport Bild). “Especially when you look back: 2018 [World Cup] was a mess, the EURO [in 2021] was screwed up. I joined in 2016, before that Germany was always in the semifinals. Then you come along and are eliminated twice in the preliminary round...and once in the round of 16.
“Being associated with failure is not something you want to stand for. I haven’t been able to help the team. We’re going back home. As a result, I’m really afraid of falling into a hole.”
The German players and their clubs will now need to support each other to make sure that doesn’t happen. As Bayern and Germany fans, let’s give them the max of our love and support as well. What happened, happened — that’s the caprice of tournament football. They’ll need to shake it off, and go again.
Auf geht’s and Mia san Mia, all the way!
And in case you haven’t listened to it yet, here’s a special edition postgame + weekend warm up podcast to get you ready for the weekend! We look at Germany’s shortcomings, Hansi Flick’s approach, Japan’s wonderful run...and close out with some classical music talk! Listen below or on Spotify.
As always, we appreciate all your support!