The world title is the big goal
This DFB team currently has exclusive success
November 27, 2023, 7:17 p.m
The male U17 selection could significantly improve the current track record of the German Football Association. The team is in the semi-finals of the World Cup in Indonesia. Thanks to great individual quality and “different mentalities”. But Argentina is a real heavyweight.
The fairytale of the German U17 national team should continue: Coach Christian Wück’s team can play on Tuesday (9.30 a.m./Sky) reach the final of the World Cup in Indonesia. The opponent in Surakarta is Argentina. “No German U-team has ever been world champion. That’s our big goal, we don’t have to hide it,” said the DFB coach the day before the encounter.
In front of 10,000 fans, Wück focuses primarily on effectiveness and fighting spirit. “We know that the senior national team hasn’t been so successful recently. We have to get back to our German mentality, for which we were always – in quotation marks – feared abroad. That’s where we wanted to lead the boys, and that’s us “It worked out quite well,” he said.
Until the duel with Argentina, the following applies: “A lot of regeneration, mobilization, alternating baths, the ice barrel is always at the forefront,” said goalkeeper Max Schmitt after the win in the quarter-finals against Spain (1-0). After five games within 13 days, Germany – much to the delight of Wück (“Thank God”) – has a three-day break for the first time in the tournament. Also to combat the gastrointestinal virus that is rampant in the team.
Hate comments spoil the joy
Unfortunately, the European champion is also used to fighting off the pitch. The European Championship title in the summer was the highlight of the 2006 season, some of whose players were exposed to racist insults on the Internet during the tournament days in Indonesia. “Young German national players who are racially insulted after winning the World Cup for Germany? In 2023? Are you serious? When will this ever stop… !?” criticized former national soccer player Jérôme Boateng.
Some users on social media posted hate comments under a picture of Brunner, who later scored the winning goal for Spain, as well as his Dortmund club colleagues Charles Herrmann and Almugera Kabar, as well as Fayssal Harchaoui (1. FC Cologne). As in Boateng’s 2014 World Cup team, the current U17 team is a diverse reflection of society: there are players born in Germany who have Ghanaian, Congolese or Moroccan roots. “We are proud of the diversity in our U17, who are currently leaving their hearts on the pitch in Indonesia,” emphasized the DFB in a Facebook comment. He wants to take legal action against offensive content.
The devil wears the Argentina jersey
Argentina got going after the surprising opening defeat against Senegal (1:3), and the following four games were won by at least two goals. The performances in the knockout phase against Venezuela (5:0) and defending champions Brazil (3:0) were impressive. Captain Claudio Echeverri, who is nicknamed “El Diablito” (the little devil) and is already part of the professional squad at River Plate, scored a hat-trick against the Brazilians. Together with teammate Agustin Ruberto, he leads the tournament’s top scorers list with five goals each.
The Argentinian selection is coached by Diego Placente, who played as a left-back for Bayer Leverkusen between 2001 and 2004. And the “Gauchos” haven’t conceded a goal in three games.
Germany has shone so far in the tournament with its ability to adapt. According to Wück, his team showed “different mentalities.” Against the USA in the round of 16 it was “a fighting performance” and against the ball-dominant Spaniards it was a “defensive performance”. It will be needed again against the goal factory Argentina (16 goals).
Anyone there for the A-Team?
Wück is also relying on the special characteristics of his selection against Argentina. “The individual quality of the players stands out. I’ve said it before that we have put together a team that is reminiscent of the German teams of the 80s and 90s,” said Wück. “Our defenders can defend, our strikers can score. These are the virtues that have always distinguished German teams here abroad.”
Even if the comparison to the seasoned senior national players and their defeats in friendly matches against Turkey and Austria is of course flawed: But these are attributes that the fans also want from the stars of the Nagelsmann team. “The road to the senior national team is very long,” said Wück. After the “giant platform” World Cup, the next step for the talent is in the clubs. “The key word is trust. We have to ensure that the boys in the transition area with the professionals get the trust and playing time. The Spaniards are showing us how, FC Barcelona above all. There are two from the 2006 vintage, who are already playing there. Unfortunately it’s not the same for us yet.”
But the team is “hot for more,” according to defense chief Finn Jeltsch. After two weeks of the tournament, the Argentinians no longer have an advantage due to the climatic conditions; the DFB selection has long since gotten used to the enormous heat and humidity.