What is the responsibility of the title company

Soccer: Difficult restart: Löw fights against skepticism

Frankfurt / Main (dpa) - Joachim Löw appears again. 46 days after the bitter EM knockout. The national coach opened the 2014 World Cup mission against Italy.

It will be a difficult new start when Löw gathers his team on Monday in Frankfurt / Main, in order to head to Brazil two days later against Argentina. The EM pain has not yet been completely overcome for players, officials and fans. But DFB boss Wolfgang Niersbach no longer sees any after-effects in the coach: “Löw is self-confident, very determined, optimistic, well recovered. He has clear ideas and a positive charisma. "

"Of course there was disappointment, but at no point did Löw want to give up," emphasized Niersbach on Sunday on FFH radio. Together with the team, a work-up of the 1: 2 in the EM semifinals against Italy and the failed title company in Poland and Ukraine is still pending. So far, only Löw's assistant Hansi Flick has written to the players, “that the EM was a good thing despite being eliminated in the semi-finals,” as Mats Hummels reported in “Bild am Sonntag”.

The Dortmunder himself had seen the German EM appearance far more critical than the sports management. With the performances “that we called up in the European Championship, I don't believe in a realistic chance of beating the top nations in the decisive games and becoming world champions. There has to be a lot more to come », said Hummels during the preparation for the season.

17 EM participants around the new Dortmund player Marco Reus, who was elected Footballer of the Year, are back in the German squad for the prestige duel on Wednesday (8.45 p.m.) against the two-time world champion Argentina. Then there is the Schalke youngster Julian Draxler.

Captain Philipp Lahm (becomes a father), Bastian Schweinsteiger (training deficit), Mario Gomez (injured), Lukas Podolski and Per Mertesacker (both should prove themselves at Arsenal FC) are missing. The long-time national players are still part of Löw's staff for the World Cup qualifiers that begin on September 7th in Hanover against the Faroe Islands. Only for goalkeeping veteran Tim Wiese is the chapter on the national team practically over.

Löw was after the knockout. against Italy, for which he had publicly assumed responsibility after his personal and tactical decisions, dived for a long time. The coach, who had previously been elevated to a magician by fans and the media and then criticized, needed a distance “to see what new stimuli and what new opportunities there are,” as the Freiburg native put it on the return flight from the European Championship.

Now the DFB head coach also has to fight against the skepticism of being able to take the last step after finishing second and third in previous tournaments. Loew undoubtedly led the DFB team - first as Jürgen Klinsmann's assistant, then as boss - back to the top of the world after the messed up European Championship in 2004. In the decisive games since 2006, Germany lost twice against Spain (2008 World Cup, 2010 World Cup) and Italy (2006 World Cup, 2012 European Championship).

Both Löw and the Schweinsteiger generation no longer have many opportunities. The Wednesday opponent Argentina with superstar Lionel Messi is the best example of what the DFB-Elf can do against big football nations. The 4-0 triumph in the 2010 World Cup quarter-finals was perhaps the best game of the Löw era. “In the meantime we've caught up with these nations, that's a great achievement for the team,” Löw said after the European Championships, but also with a view to the future added: “Overtaking one or the other opponent will certainly be the goal. »

Löw must also use the qualification obligation against Austria, Sweden, Ireland, Kazakhstan and the Faroe Islands to eliminate the weak points in the team. "We are certainly not afraid of this group," emphasized Oliver Bierhoff. “But we also know that the qualification will not be a sure-fire success. We have to be careful, the opponents are uncomfortable, ”warned the team manager.


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