Joachim Low sees similarities between Germany's youthful squad and the exciting 2010 vintage but does not consider his team a leading Euro 2020 contender.
Victory over Belarus in Monchengladbach on Saturday and anything less than a win for Northern Ireland against Netherlands would confirm Germany's place at next year's tournament.
A developing Die Mannschaft has won five of its past seven matches and is starting to build momentum after a rocky post-World Cup period.
Just one member of the squad, captain Manuel Neuer, is over the age of 30 and Low compared the potential of the team to the one that reached the semifinals in South Africa almost a decade ago.
But the long-serving head coach moved to temper expectations of a serious challenge for silverware.
"As of today we have a very talented, ambitious, hungry team with a lot of potential, comparable to the team for the 2010 World Cup," Low said.
"But we will not be among the absolute top favourites. For that, many players have to be even further along in their development. We're working on it.
"France, England have been playing with the same players for years.
"There's the Dutch, Spain… to play for a title is incredibly difficult. But the guys are really good, we have a good base."
Neuer, 33, will start in goal against Belarus, with Barcelona's Marc-Andre ter Stegen to take over for Tuesday's final Group C clash at home to Northern Ireland.
Low confirmed two more Bayern Munich regulars, Joshua Kimmich and Serge Gnabry, would be in the starting XI this weekend following their impressive performances in the club's recent Bundesliga win over Borussia Dortmund.
The Bundesliga champion, still without a full-time head coach, is now being linked with an audacious bid to bring Pep Guardiola back to Allianz Arena.
Asked about that scenario, Low replied: "Pep Guardiola was very good for the Bundesliga.
"He is one of the best coaches. I don't know if he will come back and whether he wants to [return] is just speculation. I don't know what Bayern are planning, that's their business."
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