With less three months until the start of the World Cup in Russia, Die Mannschaft meet Spain on Friday (20:45 CET) in Dusseldorf. It will be the 23rd meeting with “La Furia Roja”, and we’ve compiled all the stats ahead of this classic fixture.
POSITIVE RECORD: Germany and Spain have played each other 22 times. The Germans have come away with nine victories and six draws. Germany also have a positive goal difference, having scored 28, and conceded 23. Spain have only lost more games against three nations: England (12 defeats), France (12 defeats), and Italy (11 defeats).
LONGEST HOME RUN COMES TO AN END: After three consecutive defeats against Spain, Germany’s most recent clash with “La Furia Roja” ended in a 1-0 victory. On that day (18th November 2014), it was Toni Kroos who struck the winning blow in the closing stages of the match. The win over Vincente del Bosque’s side brought an end to the longest home unbeaten run in world football. Spain had not lost a match on home soil for eight years (32 wins, two draws).
HOME RUN: On German soil, Die Mannschaft have only lost one of eight games against Spain, with that 2-1 defeat coming on 12th May 1935. Since then, there have been five wins and two draws, with Germany coming away victorious from the last two encounters.
VÖLLER’S DEBUT: Germany last played a home game against Spain in August 2000. Die Mannschaft won the game 4-1, which is still our biggest victory against Spain. In what was Rudi Völler’s first game as head coach, Mehmet Scholl and Alexander Zickler both bagged braces. Spain’s goalscorer was the ex-Schalke man, Raul.
A LONG TIME AGO: The first competitive game between the two teams took place at the 1966 World Cup in England. Spain took the lead (23’), before Lothar Emmerich (39’) and Uwe Seeler (83’) secured a 2-1 victory for Germany. Team DFB finished top of Group B, while Spain were knocked out of the tournament at the group stage after finishing third.
EUROS CLASH: At the 2008 European Championships, the two nations both made it to the final. In Vienna however, it was Spain who emerged victorious, beating Germany 1-0 and winning the Euuros for the first time since 1964 courtesy of Fernando Torres’ goal.
WORLD CUP 2010: The most recent big game between Germany and Spain took place at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Spain won that semi-final 1-0, thanks to Carles Puyol’s goal and went on to win the tournament (beating the Netherlands 1-0 in the final).
POSITIVE RECORD IN DUSSELDORF: The last international fixture in Dusseldorf was played in September 2014. In what was the first game since the World Cup triumph, Germany lost 4-2 to Argentina. However, out of the 25 international games that have been played in Dusseldorf, Germany have won 14, drawn 5, and lost just 6. There are four towns in which Germany have lost more games (Munich: 24 games, 7 defeats. Stuttgart: 32 games, 8 defeats. Hamburg: 34 games, 8 defeats. Berlin: 45 games, 12 defeats.)
GETTING IT DONE WHEN IT COUNTS: Die Mannschaft however remain unbeaten in competitive matches in Dusseldorf (four wins, three draws), as all defeats in the city have come in friendlies.
ON A RUN: In the 21 international matches since the semi finals of EURO 2016, Die Mannschaft remain unbeaten, boasting 16 wins in that time period (five draws). The last time Germany went so many games unbeaten was between June 1996 and February 1998, when Germany went 22 games (16 wins, 6 draws). In those 21 games, Germany have kept a clean sheet eleven times. Spain however have also gone unbeaten since EURO 2016, playing 16 games and winning twelve (four draws).
FOUDING MEMBER: Spain was one of the founding members of FIFA at the start of the 20th century, however as there was no national organisation at the time, the country was represented by Madrid FC, today’s Real Madrid. The association was founded in 1909, renamed in 1913 and once again in 1914 to become known as it is today, FIFA.
HOME VICTORY: Spain won their first piece of silverware when they hosted the European Championships in 1964, beating the Soviet Union 2-1 in the final. With it, they became the first team to win the Euros on home soil. They have continued to break records as well, as they became the first team to defend a European Championships during their EURO 2012 campaign, where they beat Italy in the final of the championships in Poland and Ukraine 4-0, the largest margin of victory in a Euros final.
RECORD PLAYERS: With 167 appearances for his national team, Iker Casillas, the long-time captain of the side is their record national player. The 36-year-old is the only keeper to have kept 100 clean sheets in international games. The record goal-scorer for Spain is David Villa, who now crafts his trade at New York City FC. The striker managed 59 goals in his 98 games for the national side. Neither player however has been selected for international duty this time round.
CAPTAIN: Spain’s captain is currently Sergio Ramos. The 31-year-old-defender may be awarded his 150th cap for Spain. For club and country the Spaniard has won just about everything there is to win. The teammate of Toni Kroos at Real Madrid became the youngest European to win 100 caps nearly exactly five years ago at the age of 26 years and 357 days on 22nd March 2013.
THE MAN ON THE SIDELINES: Since July 2016 Julen Lopetegui has been the coach of the Spain national team. The former goalkeeper who spent time at both Barcelona and Real Madrid has worked his way up through the national youth teams, having won the youth European Championships with Spain U19s and U21s. From 2014 to 2016, Lopetegui was manager of FC Porto, but was released in January 2016 after having gone a year and a half without silverware. As a player he managed one cap with the Spain national team on March 23rd 1994 against Croatia.