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Four observations from Germany’s resounding 5-2 win over Italy in the UEFA Nations League

Germany was sometimes careless but mostly exquisite against Italy in their first win in this season’s UEFA Nations League campaign.

Germany v Italy: UEFA Nations League - League Path Group 3
Joshua Kimmich and Jonas Hofmann both had very good games against Italy
Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images

Bayern Munich representatives Thomas Müller, Joshua Kimmich and Manuel Neuer among others put in strong displays to help Germany to an astounding win over Italy, 5-2, in the UEFA Nations League.

Hansi Flick has his blueprint

4-2-3-1 is the formation that seems to work best; Thilo Kehrer is not part of this lineup. Leon Goretzka unfortunately might not be part of the starting XI either. However, a back four of David Raum, Antonio Rüdiger, Niklas Süle and Lukas Klostermann seems to be the way forward. In addition, Joshua Kimmich and IIkay Gündogan have been the best double pivot to date and that will remain the case moving forward. After that, the front four is fluid; Thomas Müller and Jonas Hofmann’s places seem set nonetheless. Any two of Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sané, Timo Werner and Kai Havertz will make up the remaining spots.

Antonio Rüdiger makes a big difference (as does Thomas Müller)

He wasn’t at his best today but Germany’s back line seems to have a different feel about it when the former Chelsea defender marshals it. His partnership with Niklas Süle has reaped rewards as well (although Süle made a big error today and was saved by Manuel Neuer). Overall, with David Raum and Lukas Klostermann, they seem capable of holding a high line. Also, Rüdiger is strong in 1v1 situations; this has to be the case to play in a Flick defense.

Meanwhile, Müller organized the team but by now, all Bayern fans know exactly what Müller adds,

Jonas Hofmann has been the revelation of the Nations League

Hofmann put in another solid display today. His runs into the box opened up space for others to take advantage. Müller did so, for example. Hofmann has long been valued at Borussia Park for Mönchengladbach but not so for Germany. I think, this time, he is hear to stay!

The crowd is back in it!

The crowd sounded loud and seemed to enjoy the game. During Joachim Löw’s final months as national manager, collective groans were to be expected rather than cheers. The fans of the national side seem to be enjoying their team again and they know that, in Flick, they have a manager they can trust.

That’s it from me — as always, let us know your thoughts and thank you for reading!

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