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USA 1-3 Germany: Initial reactions and observations

Julian Nagelsmann cooks the USMNT in his first game in charge.

Germany v France - International Friendly Photo by Boris Streubel/Getty Images

Initial reactions and observations

  • 3-1 over the USMNT is a solid start to proceedings for this new look Germany team under Julian Nagelsmann. It wasn’t very close to perfect, in fact the play looked downright sloppy in parts of the first half and early in the second, but getting results is something the Germans have been unable to do for a long time and it’s good to see them get that bare minimum of mojo back.
  • Is Leroy Sane not the best player in the world right now? Come on, he’s literally carrying Bayern Munich and Germany on his back as of late.
  • As a non-USMNT watcher, seeing all the complaints online about Greg Berhalter was a little bit confusing until this game. The American players were so disorganized and disjointed that it’s frankly a miracle that they even scored once. Maybe the US Soccer fans have a point.
  • Germany still have serious confidence issues, which can be seen after the team went 1-0 down. The performance immediately broke down and became sloppy, and didn’t fix itself until Gundogan scored the equalizer. Nagelsmann will need to work on that if he wants his team to be competitive in the Euros. Actually coming back to win the game is a BIG deal in that context.
  • The hybrid back-three setup that Nagelsmann really likes struggled to deal with the US attacks for much of the game, especially down the wings. He may need to rethink his choice of defensive setup going forward.

Looking for more analysis of the game? Check out our newest podcast episode where we break down Nagelsmann’s first win with Germany, Tuchel’s potential loss of the dressing room, and more! Listen to it below or on Spotify.

Full time: Germany win 3-1 against the USMNT.

60’ — GOOOOOOOOOOOOAL! Musiala makes it 3-1!

57’ — GOOOOOOOOAL! Fullkrug makes it 2-1 to the Germans!

45’ — The second half is underway!

Halftime observations and analysis

  • Ter Stegen is never cementing himself as Germany’s #1 keeper with performances like these.
  • If not for Leroy Sane, Germany would be losing to the USMNT right now. Him and Musiala seem like the only bright spots on the team.
  • Robin Gosens needs a sub, he’s been a liability on his flank.
  • Mats Hummels’ lack of pace has been a small issue.
  • Overall, not an impressive half. Next 45 needs to be better.

Halftime: USMNT 1-1 Germany.

39’ — GOOOOOOOOOOAL! Gundogan makes it 1-1, but it was all created by Sane.

27’ — Goal. Pulisic makes it 1-0 to the USMNT.

25’ — Ter Stegen brought down Pulisic in the box but it wasn’t a penalty according to the ref. He might’ve gotten away with that one.

10’ — Wirtz hits the post! So close by the Germans.

One hour until kickoff: We have lineups! Looks like Nagelsmann kept true to his word and decided to start Florian Wirtz and Jamal Musiala together for once. However, only two Bayern Munich players make the XI, with both Leon Goretzka and Thomas Muller missing out. The defense resembles a back-three with three center backs, but it could also be a back four.

Meanwhile, in other news, Joshua Kimmich has been sent back to Munich due to a cold. He won’t play during this break.

Thanks to a little help from Bayern Munich last month, Germany have a new coach. Julian Nagelsmann is going to get the national team back on track and lead it to great things. Sounds great, right?

Well, the proof is in the pudding, or performances in this case. Nagelsmann’s Germany opens its campaign with a game against the USMNT, because no one in Europe was available to play due to Euro 2024 qualifiers. People are curious to see what his team will look like — will Niclas Füllkrug start? Will Mats Hummels return to the starting XI? Will Germany get back to winning games?

We’ll see.

While you’re waiting for the game, why not check out our Weekend Warm-up podcast! Listen to it below or on Spotify.

Match Info

Location: Pratt & Whitney Stadium, East Hartford, Connecticut, United States.

Time: 10:00 am EST

TV/streaming: ESPN+, Find Your Country

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