Germany’s suffered a shock 2-1 loss to Japan in the opening Group E fixture of the Qatar World Cup, on Wednesday.
Later, Spain registered its biggest ever victory in World Cups, after the match against Costa Rica ended 7-0 in favour of the La Furia Roja. Ferran Torres scored a brace while Dani Olmo, Alvaro Morata, Marco Asensio, Carlos Soler and Gavi were also on the scoresheet.
Spain’s massive win coupled with the loss against Japan makes Germany’s chances of qualifying from Group C to the round of 16 more difficult.
How Germany can ensure qualification for the knockout stage of the World Cup
Germany next faces Spain on November 28 and then takes on Costa Rica on December 2
Germany needs to win both these games to give itself the best chance for qualification. Two wins would put it at six points, which could ensure a top spot depending on other results.
But there is a potential scenario in which three teams from Group E end at six points, which would see one of those teams miss out on a knockout spot on the basis of goal difference. This means Germany needs to outscore Spain and Costa Rica heavily to boost its chance of qualification.
If Germany fails to win one of the next two games, its progression would become harder. A draw and a win would leave it at four points, which would mean it need other results of the group to go in its favour.
If Germany finishes second, it will make the road forward more difficult than it would want as it chases a fifth World Cup title
Losing to either Spain or Costa Rica would almost end Germany’s hopes of making it to the knockout rounds for the second successive edition of the World Cup.
There is one scenario where Germany could qualify even if it loses one more game in the group stage, but this one comes with conditions attached.
If Germany loses one more game, it would need to win the other game and then hope one of Spain, Costa Rica and Japan win all its games in the group and no games are drawn. If this scenario plays out, it would put the group topper at nine points and the rest at three points, where, again, goal difference would come into play.
After the Costa Rica demolition, Spain’s goal difference skyrocketed and will prove vital in its qualification while also making Germany’s qualification even harder.