Germany rounded off a fine international break with a thumping 4-0 win over Iceland, scoring 12 goals in three games and conceding none. Bayern Munich players remained in the forefront. Here’s who stood out in Germany’s latest win.
Jersey Swap: Timo Werner
What a game the Iceland defender had! Germany’s attack kept putting the ball into dangerous places, but Werner was always on hand to clear it away from the Iceland goal. True, his performance was slightly marred by the own goal he scored in the dying minutes, but the game was done and dusted by then. Otherwise, Werner did his absolute best to ensure that his side conceded as few goals as possible, and was quite successful to a certain extent. If it wasn’t for Werner, Germany would have been flying home with a much bigger scoreline, possibly even bigger than their 6-0 drubbing of Armenia the other day. But Werner was Iceland’s savior multiple times, and ultimately saved them from embarrassment.
Wait...what do you mean he was playing for Germany?
Der Kaiser: Antonio Rüdiger
Germany’s defenders didn’t have too much to do today, but that didn’t mean they could let their guard down. Iceland’s forward pressing was impressive at times, and they did manage to get a few shots to their name. But nothing of importance happened, mostly thanks to Rüdiger. The Chelsea defender got himself into numerous good positions and made a few great challenges as well to keep Iceland’s offense at bay. He was easily the best out of a rather quiet German defense, but that’s not to say he doesn’t deserve his credit. Plus, he scored a sumptuous header in the first half off a free kick from Joshua Kimmich. Speaking of whom…
Der Fußballgott: Joshua Kimmich
Bayern Munich’s midfield maestro was great today as well. Although he wasn’t as noticeable as some of his teammates, he was quietly effective in the middle of the park. Together with his partner Leon Goretzka (who we’ll get to in a bit), Kimmich sprayed a lot of good passes forward, and was often the lone defensive anchor when Goretzka released forward to join the attack. Kimmich did the anchor job very well, as few Icelandic attacks managed to materialize at all. Now, this wasn’t Kimmich’s best game in national colors per se, but it was a good game from him nonetheless, a reassuring sign for Bayern and Germany fans around the world. Also, that free kick assist to Rüdiger was pretty good as well.
Der Bomber: Leroy Sané
Sané already had a good showing in his last two Germany games, and he built on that steady performance streak today. He looked sharp and active in attack, and didn’t panic or misfire like he often did at the start of the season. It was a lovely ball from him that assisted Serge Gnabry’s opener, and he himself got on the scoresheet with a thumping shot that left the keeper with no chance. Not only that, he was often at the helm of Germany’s frequent attacks, and could be seen dictating the play among the front three, whether he was trying to do it himself or linking up with a teammate. It’s very encouraging to see Sané showcase his talent like this in multiple games, and it just goes to show that the talent that got him to Bayern Munich in the first place is still very much there. Now let’s hope he can replicate these good showings under Julian Nagelsmann as well.
Meister of the Match: Leon Goretzka
The Incredible Hulk is back! Goretzka had an amazing game today, mainly acting as a deep lying playmaker and often getting forward into the attack as well. He was all over the place all game, and made his mark very clear on the Iceland defense, not to mention his own. He got an assist, laying off the ball perfectly for Sané to finish in the second half, and he could have gotten a goal for himself if it wasn’t for a stray offside Jamal Musiala. But even without the goal, Goretzka’s playmaking was enough to make him stand out among his teammates, even in a position that stands out relatively less. Sometimes, people can forget how important holding midfielders are, and how much they can impact a game. Well, look no further than Goretzka. Switching between positions all game, whether that be a playmaker, box-to-box, or even a defensive midfielder, he did his job very well and ensured that Germany could get another big, morale-boosting win.
Goretzka also made headlines before the game by doing something good for charity, along with his partner-in-crime Kimmich. Read more about it here!