Sat, 16 Oct 2021

By Oliver Trust

BERLIN, Oct. 10 (Xinhua) -- Hansi Flick's pragmatism can carry the newly formed German national team to new heights.

In his first four games, the 56-year-old national coach not only managed to achieve four wins (14-1 goals) but won back the fan's hearts.

Regarding his squad, significant changes triggered a state of optimism among his players and fans. Before, the wavering 2014 World Champion went through years of disorientation in the final stages of Flick's predecessor Joachim Low.

Reason is enough for goal-keeper Manuel Neuer to express ambitions that at present appear like a bold statement. But talking about the goal to return to the top and win the 2022 World Cup, is addressing the new generations' claim to start a new era.

"It's realistic to talk about the title," the Bayern keeper said ahead of the 2022 qualifier against North Macedonia this Monday. "It's now up to us to reach the required level to create a competitive team able to win the tournament."

Neuer's line of approach comes along with Flick's frame-setting innovations that deliver the guidelines for central issues.

STRICT MERIT SYSTEM

Only a consistent high-performance level can secure the player's position in the starting eleven and the squad.

Experienced returnee Mats Hummels (Dortmund) lost his place in the defense due to the upswing of Antonio Ruediger (Chelsea) and Niklas Suele (Bayern). Both provide more speed, but Hummels remains a strong competitor.

Star striker Thomas Mueller has to face a battle with Dortmund forward Marco Reus about the central position behind the front line.

"We count on a strict merit system," Flick announced, while aware time is short until the 2022 World Cup's kick-off.

BEST POSITION PRINCIPLE

The Bayern midfielders Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka cover the game center while Loew used Kimmich's right-back qualities.

Upfront, the German coach is intensively trying to find the best spot for his attackers such as Leroy Sane, Serge Gnabry, and Timo Werner.

Flick's measures come along with an empathic working style gaining the player's trust.

One of the most pressing issues: Can the team find answers when facing the leading nations? The schedule doesn't provide an opportunity to find answers until the end of 2022.

Neuer is talking about the 2022 World Cup as a journey into the unknown "as no one has ever played a major tournament in winter in the middle of a season."

PROMISING YOUNGSTERS

Salzburg striker Karim Adeyemi might soon join the fraction of youngsters as a regular force. The 19-year-old developed into one of Europe's most wanted, scoring 21 goals and providing 17 assists for the Austrian team.

Bayern, Leipzig, Dortmund, and Liverpool are said to be interested in signing the gifted forward.

Florian Wirtz (18/Leverkusen), Jamal Musiala (18/Bayern), David Raum (23/Hoffenheim), and Nico Schlotterbeck (21/Freiburg) complete the start into a new era while Flick is trying to find solutions for the full-back positions.

Flick made clear: The team always stands above individual ambitions. "We represent the entire country. To represent the nation must be an honor as it is to wear the German shirt. The German team is nothing without our fans," the German manager added.

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