Germany vs Latvia was only ever going to be a training game for the Germans in preparation for Euro 2020 which kicks off on Friday, 11th of June 2021. Manuel Neuer received a guard of honor in celebration of 100 caps for his nation. Joachim Low went with the 3-4-3. A frontline of Serge Gnabry, Kai Havertz, and Thomas Muller supported by Robin Gosens and Joshua Kimmich as the wing-backs, due to the lowly opposition, Low could afford to pair Ilkay Gundogan and Toni Kroos alone in midfield. The backline he fielded is probably the one we will see at the tournament. Antonio Rudiger, Mats Hummels, and Matthias Ginter with the centurion in goal.
40 seconds into the game and Roberts Ozols was called into action to save from Thomas Muller and it set the pace for the game. A minute later and Kai Havertz found some space and flashed a shot wide. On 12, a dangerous Kimmich cross evaded everyone but it spelled danger. Havertz flashed a cross on 15 but Muller could not angle his body to get a better shot. His next cross was drilled in for the opener by Gosens. 1-0. Gosens’ first international goal. A few minutes later and Gundogan doubled the lead with a rocket from his left boot. 2-0. On 25, Kimmich hit the outside of the post with a low shot. A minute later and Gosens turned provider as he squared the ball for Muller to fire home. Muller’s first goal for Germany since 2018. 3-0.
Havertz was trying to square the ball across for a tap in but Ozols’ leg took the ball into the net. 4-0. Before half-time, the goal of the game happened. A terrific outside-of-the-boot pass from Mats Hummels found Gnabry behind the Latvia defense and boy did he finish it with aplomb. 5-0.
Timo Werner came on in the second half and got a goal immediately by turning Kimmich’s cross in. 6-0. Ozols then produced a magnificent save to deny Werner his second on 59. Sane missed two opportunities in a matter of minutes. This game was attack vs defense and there was only one winner in such a duel. However, out of absolutely nothing, Latvia got their goal. The ball bounced up invitingly for Aleksejs Saveljevs and he arrowed it beyond Neuer. A minute later and Leroy Sane responded by slamming Muller’s layup in.
A one-sided affair that could only end one way. Die Mannschaft will face France in their Euro 2020 opener on Tuesday next week. Fiercer opponents to give them a real test. Latvia will face Estonia in a friendly on Thursday.