Reaching the World Cup semi-finals should be considered a good achievement for Germany, according to former international Jurgen Klinsmann, after Hansi Flick’s side could only muster a 1-1 draw against Spain.
The 2014 champions have picked up just one point from their first two Group E games, following a shock 2-1 loss to Japan in their opener, and must beat Costa Rica next week to stand any chance of progressing.
A powerful strike from substitute Niclas Fullkrug with seven minutes to go earned the Germans a point against Spain, after Alvaro Morata opened the scoring midway through the second half.
But not everyone was impressed. In the BBC studio, when asked if Germany could win the World Cup, former England defender Rio Ferdinand said: “No, not for me”.
Klinsmann, who earned over 100 caps for Germany as a player and won the 1990 World Cup, agreed that their chances of notching a fifth World Cup title look slim.
He said: “Very difficult, but I think it’s a group that’s now growing. If they now hopefully go through the group stage and make it until the semi-finals, that would be good.
“But winning it, I think that’s reserved for other teams.”
Former Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino was a little more optimistic, though.
“I am thinking that Germany can surprise – I changed my mind after the second half,” he said.
One Germany player who impressed the pundits was Bayern Munich teenager Jamal Musiala, who set up the equaliser but squandered a good chance to score himself when one-on-one with Unai Simon.
“He was the outstanding player in the German side, and at such a young age,” said Klinsmann.
“He’s full of surprising elements, he’s not scared, he’s fearless, he knows his runs. If he was a little bit calmer finishing, he could’ve (scored).
“Obviously Musiala is a fantastic young player who grows now through the Bayern Munich system. He’s exciting, this is his first World Cup and he will only get better.”
Musiala is still just 19 years old but is already a regular for club and country, with nine goals and six assists to his name in the Bundesliga already this season.
“For me he’s one of the most talented young players,” said Pochettino.
“As a 19-year old, he’s fantastic. With Gavi, (Jude) Bellingham, Pedri…a massive talent. I think he’s going to grow during the World Cup.”