Who? Germany - Mexico
Where? Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
When? June 17, 17:00 (CET local time)
Germany (Yossi Medina)
The reigning World Cup champions is starting their way to win the title once again. It will be hard as long as the history is against them. Only two teams managed to win the title twice in a row, Italy (1934 and 1938) and Brazil (1958 and 1962). More than 50 years no team managed to keep the title for four more years, but Germany believe in their ability to do that.
If we are dealing with records, there is one guy that want to break them, Joachim Löw. In his third World Cup as Germany manager, he can make history with being the coach with the highest number of World Cup wins. The current record set by another Germany coach, Helmut Schön, who made 16 World Cup wins. In order to equal that record, Löw need to win five more matches and Mexico will be his first step.
Another possible record for Germany, or at least a possibility to be close to such one, is the goalscoring record of Miroslav Klose. With 10 goals in his two previous World Cup, Thomas Müller is wishing to make another remarkable tournament. If he want to equal Klose's record, he will aim to score six more goals, one more than the amount he scored in 2010 and 2014 World Cups.
Before speaking of reaching the highest heights, Germany is need to pass thorugh their first match against Mexico, which would not be an easy task. Neverthelss, Germany showed us more than once that they can make anything easier, reminding their previous World Cup opening match, while they thrashed Portugal 4:0. Will Mexico challenge them? It all depends on the ability of the Gemrans.
Mexico (Meir Lozowick)
From the moment that Maradona held in his hands the names in the drawing of the World cup, it’s was clear that Mexico got a very complicated draw. Not only having tough opponents in the group, but also the order of the games itself, having to play against the current champions Germany and what could be the battle for the 2nd place vs Sweden on the third game. The first immediate conclusion is that the first game against Germany is the most important game. If Mexico could get a very surprising positive result (Even a draw), they will have a huge advantage on the qualification race from group F. Easier said than done. Mexico has never won against Germany in an official game, when the last game between the two teams finished with a 4:1 win for the Germans in last year's Confederations Cup semi-final.
However, on the Mexican side, the optimism is reigning. The players obviously know what they are up front, but according to their declarations, we should expect to an interesting and surprising outcome. Carlos Salcedo, who plays in Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt declared that “although they are one of the best teams, they don’t have a player like Messi, Ronaldo or Neymar”. He also said that the unity of the players in Mexico is not less than the German one. Andres Guardado with a similar statement, claimed that “as a team, we don’t fall from any other, include Germany”.
The reality is that Mexico would be very satisfied if they could achieve a draw. It will put the two other teams in the group on pressure to gain something against Germany. In a second thought, who said that first game against Germany is a bad draw?