Germany’s warm-up match against Hungary on Saturday proved to be a successful run-out for the Nationalelf, and a good assessment tool for head coach Joachim Low, just before this summer’s World Cup.
As I predicted yesterday, Germany finished with three goals in the bag and did it with relative ease. A penalty from Podolski, a tap-in from Gomez, and a wonderful finish from Cacau – who rounded the Hungarian goalkeeper before scoring – secured the game for the Germans.
All eyes were on young combative midfielder Sami Khedira, who has been chosen by Joachim Low to occupy the space left by Michael Ballack. Khedira had a good game in the center of the pitch, winning and keeping posession and holding the ball up well. His passing was neat and he also launched a few good team moves when combining with man-of-the-match Mesut Ozil.
The German starting XI was as follows: Neuer – Boateng, Friedrich, Mertesacker, Westermann – Kroos, Khedira – Trochowski, Ozil, Podolski – Klose
Obvious omissions were the rested Schweinsteiger, who would have played instead of Kroos, and Phillip Lahm, who would have played instead of Heiko Westermann.
Mesut Ozil was a constant thorn in the Hungarian side, carving them open with his runs and passing time and again.
The Germans will be confident after this result, and will head into the World Cup with their heads rightly held high. Seeing the Nationalelf have a shock group stage exit seems highly unlikely after this strong showing, but expectations in the German camp and in the German media will surely rise.
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