Germany may have won its game against Costa Rica with a 4-2 scoreline on Friday but the victory wasn’t enough to see the side qualify for the Round of 16.
Quite understandably, coach Hansi Flick is crestfallen. “I haven’t talked to the team, but I went to the dressing room and everyone is disappointed,” he told the media after the FIFA World Cup, Group E match at the Al Bayt Stadium.
“We had chances, but we missed them. The potential was there to strike a goal and you could put pressure, but we were not able to do so,” rued Flick.
There were multiple scenarios which could come to be after Japan’s Ao Tanaka gave his side the lead in the 51st minute in the other game against Spain. But Flick insists he wants to analyse only his team’s shortcomings instead of harping on mathematical probabilities.
“I don’t care about different teams. It’s up to us... the matches and number of goals are our fault. We had sufficient chances against Spain, and you have to use your chance and strike goal, and it would have been a different situation. Lot of individual mistakes that make me very upset and I told the team that.
“... Against Japan, for a period between 65 and 70 minutes, the opponents prevailed. If you look at the defence, there were a few things that didn’t go along as per plan.”
The silver lining, though, hasn’t gone unnoticed. “We were able to come back and (Kai) Havertz turned the game around. He gave us energy and we can go home with a win.”
What’s lost cannot be recovered and Flick is eager to move on. He said, “We have just been eliminated and if you know me and my team, you know we can get up and recover quickly. We will see how we can implement our ideas.”
On the future of the German football team, which has been shown the door in the group stage for the second consecutive edition of the World Cup, Flick said: “We have players who play with top clubs, and we have quality. For (a better) future of German football, we have to do things differently. We have been talking about new goalkeepers, new full-backs for a long time and we need to focus on training of young players. For the next 10 years, it will be important to focus on the next generation.”
Midfielder Jamal Musiala is known to be exceptional on the ball but he hasn’t found his name on the scoresheet in Qatar 2022. That, however, doesn’t bother Flick.
“What Jamal showed today, it’s unfortunate that he can’t continue to play in this event. He is outstanding and in the next couple of years, we are heading in the right direction,” Flick signed off.
Japan and Spain have made the last 16 from Group E. Germany joins Canada, which had already been eliminated with a game to spare.