Germany got off to the perfect start to their EURO 2020 qualifying campaign with a dramatic 3-2 win against the Netherlands. DFB.de gathered the thoughts from the Die Mannschaft camp after full time in Amsterdam.
JOACHIM LÖW: We played really well in the first half; we controlled the game and we had some great movement in attack and runs behind the defence. We fully deserved to lead at the break and we had implemented what we had practised in training superbly. Nico’s pass for the opener was brilliant, a low cross just like we had talked about, and Leroy’s finish was perfect. Their first goal back came at a bad time. We fought hard in the second half and tried to get our opponents under control again, but our football wasn’t on the same level anymore.
We knew at half time that the Netherlands would switch things up and start pressing higher, as they had nothing to lose. We started to get flustered and gave the ball away too easily. It’s a process that a young team has to go through. What pleases me is that the team never lost the belief that they could win the game, and in the end we got our reward. The winning goal was really well worked. The luck that perhaps we’ve been missing lately was on our side again today. Getting three points here in the Netherlands to kick off our qualifying campaign is fantastic and will really help our process. But we saw that we still have a lot of work to do. We need to maintain control better at 2-0 up. The team battled brilliantly and I can only take my hat off to them.
MANUEL NEUER: The win is precious. We’ve had two disappointing results against the Netherlands of late, but today was our day. We struggled at times in the first half already – our build-up play wasn’t as fluid as it could be, but when we did get through, we had a lot of space and we got our goals. It’s always a setback to concede so soon after half time. It’s not easy for such a young team to not let that faze them, but we never lost courage and fortunately ended up grabbing the winner.
SERGE GNABRY: Our first-half performance was sensational. I struck the ball perfectly for my goal. Then Netherlands scored right after the break and we started to wobble. They got an extra push with the home support behind them and really started piling on the pressure. We hardly had the ball, but we managed to hold on and then Nico goes and scores the winner. It gives us a huge boost.
NICO SCHULZ: It feels amazing, not just for me, but the win will do the whole team the world of good. Marco actually took up my position in the build-up to the goal, so I figured I’d go somewhere else. Then he plays the ball to me and I just gave it everything I had. We sat too deep early in the second half, but we managed to sort that out about halfway through. We’re delighted to have gotten the win. We will take a lot of confidence from the game. We always knew that we have the quality, and we showed that on the pitch today.
MARCO REUS: We had a good first half, but it all came undone in the second. We were dropping too deep and were under constant pressure. It was a little bit smash-and-grab in the end. We’ve got some great young players, who have got immense pace and real desire. The winning goal was a result of sheer determination and demonstrates the character of the team. The win will give us a great deal of confidence and it will really boost spirits.###more###