With Spain drawn in the same group as Germany at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the clash between the two European heavyweights has been tipped as the game to watch in the opening stages in Qatar. Now, after the results of the first round, Sunday’s Group E schedule is given even more importance.
Spain, Art World Cup winners in 2010, started their group campaign in style when they thrashed Costa Rica 7-0. However, for Germany, the four-time world champions suffered a shock 2-1 defeat against Japan that left their chances of qualification hanging in the balance.
Both teams could do with a “return to success,” Ian King said Football365. But Germany “probably needs it more.” Four years ago in Russia, Die Mannschaft finished bottom of Group G after crashing out at the first barrier, and defeat to Spain on Sunday could see them face the same predicament.
A German newspaper became a “disaster”. Bild described the loss against Japan on Wednesday, while Welt said the national team once again “freaked out” at the start of a major tournament, losing 1-0 to Mexico in their 2018 World Cup opener.
The last time the two teams met Spain was a 6-0 thrashing of Germany in the UEFA Nations League in November 2020. The Germans have not won a competitive match against La Roja since a 2-0 win at Euro 1988.
Coincidence of facts
- Who: Spain v Germany
- What: FIFA World Cup Group E second round
- When: Sunday, November 27, 2022
- Where: Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
- Start time: 19:00 (all times GMT)
How to watch on TV in the UK
Sunday’s Group E match between Spain and Germany will be shown live in the UK BBC One and BBC iPlayer. The telecast starts at 6:30 p.m., the match starts at 7:00 p.m.
Spain head coach Luis Enrique may stick with the same 11 as against Costa Rica. However, he changed the half of the field, making five substitutions. Trying to “change” Enrique’s mind is a “thankless task,” Gray Whitebloom said on 90min.com.
Germany winger Leroy Sane missed the loss to Japan with a knee injury and remains questionable for Sunday’s game. Head coach Hansi Flick is not expected to make too many changes, but could bring Niklas Fühlkrug into the attack instead of Kai Havertz.
Possible starting XI
- Spain: Simon; Azpilicueta, Rodri, Laporte, Alba; Gavi, Busquets, Pedri; Torres, Asensio, Olma
- Germany: Neuer; Kehrer, Rudiger, Schlotterbeck, Raum; Kimich, Gundogan; Gnabry, Muller, Musiala; Full circle
Spain were “unstoppable in front of goal” against Costa Rica and they “won” the last time they met Germany, says Oliver Thomas on Sporty Mole. However, expect “harder business” on Sunday. While Germany will “certainly be fired up” for this key clash, “we see Enrique’s side winning” which could end Die Mannschaft’s short stay in Qatar. Prediction: Spain 2 Germany 0.
It’s “hard to call,” Chris Sutton said BBC. Germany is “inconsistent”, but you can see how Hansi Flick wants to play. They will try to “take the game” to Spain, but it is “very dangerous”. Sutton can see the match ending in a draw, which “won’t knock Germany out” but will leave them “on the brink of a group stage exit” for a second consecutive World Cup. Prediction: Spain 1 Germany 1.
It’s a meeting between two teams that “know nothing but a monopoly on possession,” Gray Whitebloom said on 90min.com. In what should be an “intriguing contest that could be much more evenly matched than its early results suggest,” this heavyweight could “play out” an entertaining draw. Prediction: Spain 2 Germany 2.
In what could turn out to be a “defining World Cup match” for both countries, there is already “serious, serious danger” in this mouth-watering clash, said Squirrel. Germany “must get a win” against Spain or “it could be curtains”. Prediction: Spain 1 Germany 1.
The 60,000-capacity Al Bait Stadium in Al Khor will host nine matches at Qatar 2022, including one quarter-final and one semi-final. Its design is inspired by the tents historically used in the Persian Gulf region.
- Head coach: Luis Enrique
- Key player: Pedro
- One to watch: Gavi
- Goalkeepers: Unai Simon (Athletic Club), Robert Sanchez (Brighton & Hove Albion), David Raya (Brentford FC)
- Defenders: Cesar Azpilicueta (FC “Chelsea”), Dani Carvajal (FC “Real”), Eric Garcia (FC “Barcelona”), Hugo Guillamon (FC “Valencia”), Pau Torres (FC “Villarreal”), Aymeric Laporte (FC ” Manchester City”), Jordi Alba (FC Barcelona), Jose Gaya (Valencia)
- Midfielders: Sergio Busquets (FC Barcelona), Rodri Hernandez (FC Manchester City), Gavi (FC Barcelona), Carlos Soler (Paris Saint-Germain), Marcos Llorente (Atletico de Madrid), Pedro Gonzalez (FC Barcelona), Koke Resurrecion (Atletico de Madrid)
- forwards: Ferran Torres (Barcelona), Nico Williams (Athletic), Jeremy Pino (Villarreal), Alvaro Marat (Atletico de Madrid), Marco Asensio (Real), Pablo Sarabia (Paris Saint-Germain “), Dani Olma (“RB Leipzig”). ), Ansu Fati (FC Barcelona)
- Head coach: Hansi Flick
- Key player: Manuel Neuer
- One to watch: Jamal Musiyala
- Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona), Kevin Trapp (Eintracht Frankfurt)
- Defenders: Armel Bella-Kotchap (Southampton), Matthias Ginter (SC Freiburg), Christian Gunter (SC Freiburg), Thila Kerrer (West Ham), Lucas Klostermann (RB Leipzig), David Raum (RB Leipzig), Antonio Rudiger (Real Madrid), Niklas Schlotterback (Borussia Dortmund), Niklas Sule (Borussia Dortmund)
- Midfielders: Julian Brandt (Borussia Dortmund), Leon Goretzka (Bayern Munich), Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City), Jonas Hoffmann (RB Leipzig), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich)
- forwards: Karim Adeyemi (Borussia Dortmund), Niklas Fulkrug (Werder Bremen), Serge Gnabry (Bayern Munich), Mario Gotze (Eintracht Frankfurt), Kai Havertz (Chelsea), Yusuf Mukoka (Borussia Dortmund), Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich), Leroy Sane (Bayern Munich)
Group E table, results and schedule
Wednesday, November 23
- Germany 1 Japan 2
- Spain 7 Costa Rica 0
Sunday, November 27
- Japan v Costa Rica (Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium; 10am; ITV)
- Spain v Germany (Al Bait Stadium; 7pm; BBC)
Thursday, December 1
- Japan v Spain (Khalifa International Stadium; 7pm; ITV)
- Costa Rica v Germany (Al Bait Stadium; 7pm; ITV)