At the weekend in the Russian city of Kazan, the group phase draw was made for next year’s Confederations Cup tournament. Nationaltrainer Joachim Löw was present at the event, with the World Champion Nationalmannschaft pitted against Asian champions Australia, Copa América champions Chile, and the winner of the African Nations Cup which is due to be played in January next year.
It is an interesting draw, with Germany’s Group B arguably a little tougher than group A, which consists of hosts Russia, Euro 2016 winners Portugal, Oceania champions New Zealand, and CONCACAF Gold Cup champions Mexico.
The tournament is due to kick off with Russia’s opener against the New Zealanders on Saturday 17th June 2016, and Germany will get their tournament underway two days later against the Socceroos in the city of Sochi, host city of the 2016 Olympic Winter Games. Next up with be the tough clash against Chile in Kazan on Thursday 22nd June, with the final group encounter against the African champions in Sochi on Sunday 25th June.
The semi-finals will be held on 28th and 29th June, with the third-place playoff and final on the afternoon and evening of Sunday 2nd July. The final will be played in St. Petersburg’s Petrovsky Stadium, the home of club side Zenit.
In terms of the numbers, Germany’s record against Australia read at three wins, one draw and one defeat – but the two most recent meetings have been far from memorable. After winning their first three matches against the Socceroos at the World Cup in 1974 (3-0), the 2005 Confederations Cup (4-3) and the 2010 World Cup (4-0), they have had to make do with a 2-1 friendly defeat in Mönchengladbach in 2011, before what was a fortunate draw in Kaiserslautern in 2015.
Germany have played a total of seven times against the Chileans, with five victories and two defeats. The first friendly meeting saw Sepp Herberger’s side win 2-1 in Stuttgart, but the Chileans would exact revenge in Santiago with a 3-1 victory. With the South Americans hosting the World Cup the following year the first competitive meeting between the two teams clearly presented a challenge to the Nationalmannschaft, only for their famous tournament mentality to kick into gear with a 2-0 win, again in Chilean capital.
A 2-1 reverse in Santiago in 1968 meant that the record at the time was an even two wins each, but since then Germany have registered three straight victories – the first two at World Cup final tournaments in the opening group phase. A tight encounter in Berlin in 1974 was settled by a memorable Paul Breitner strike, while in 1982 in Spain Karl-Heinz Rummenigge ran in a superb hat-trick as Jupp Derwall’s side eased to a 4-1 win.
The last meeting between the two teams took place in the spring of 2014, with Jogi Löw’s side eking out a tight 1-0 win in Stuttgart courtesy of a first-half strike from Mario Götze. The two teams had been scheduled to meet in November 2009, but the fixture had been cancelled following the sad and untimely death of German goalkeeper Robert Enke.
The statistics, if anything, show how different are in competitive fixtures. Against both Australia and Chile the overall record measures out at eight wins, one draw and three defeats, but in tournament competition the Mannschaft have a perfect one-hundred percent record with five wins out of five.