Despite being clear and overwhelming favorites in World Cup Group G, Germany are taking nothing for granted.
Germany’s manager Joachim Löw knows what he’s up against, but instead of being nervy, he’s ready to go.
“It is clear that we are the favorites,” he told German media. But what followed displayed an air of caution, if not excitement, from the German boss. “Football writes all the crazy stories. For us, this is one hell of a group we will see what is possible.”
Despite expressing the same reserved confidence many managers and athletes around the world have taken to expressing to the media, Low could not contain himself about meeting his former boss Jurgen Klinsmann.
“Meeting old acquaintences with USA in the group is very special, especially in Germany. We know (Klinsmann) has raised the level of football in the United States recently to a new level.”
The Germans still hold a large amount of respect for their former manager. German paper Die Welt labeled him as a “motivator.” Ultimately, though, the article dispeled Klinsmann’s idea that Group G represents a “Group of Death” calling it “a stopover on the way to the knockout phase” from a German perspective.
German defender Per Mertesacker says the players share this respect for their former manager, telling Die Welt that “Klinsmann is the person who has inspired a generation of young footballers.” High praise from a team filled with youthful talent.
Former German international and current team manager (the US version of the term “manager,” not a coaching role) Oliver Bierhoff designated the group “feasible” saying, “If you look closely, every opponent is uncomfortable, but of course we are favorites.”
Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said, “I believe that we qualify. But it’s not a lottery ticket.”