Germany's woes deepen with a surprising 4-1 loss to Japan

Germany’s woes deepen with a surprising 4-1 loss to Japan

Japan achieved a stunning victory over Germany, marking the team responsible for Germany’s early exit from the last World Cup in Qatar. The final score was 2-1, with Japan managing to score twice in each half of the match.

The loss has cast doubt on the future of Germany’s coach, Flick, especially as the European Championships are just nine months away. In the first half, Junya Ito and Ayase Ueda scored for Japan, while Leroy Sane netted one for Germany, resulting in a 2-1 halftime lead for Japan, accompanied by jeers from the home fans.

Germany’s uninspiring performance persisted into the second half, and Japan added insult to injury by scoring two more goals in the final five minutes through Takuma Asano and Ao Tanaka, solidifying their dominant performance.

Before the game, Flick had promised to field Germany’s “core team” and avoid experimental strategies that had resulted in only one win in five games since their World Cup exit. However, Flick’s decision to start Nico Schlotterbeck at left-back, a position he had little experience in, proved costly. Schlotterbeck’s inexperience became evident when he lost track of Japan’s winger, Yukinari Sugawara, leading to Ito’s opening goal.

All Goals & Highlights: Germany vs Japan

Germany managed to equalize when captain Ilkay Gundogan found Florian Wirtz on the edge of the box. Wirtz chose to pass to Sane, who calmly scored. Nevertheless, Japan quickly struck back, with Sugawara exploiting Schlotterbeck’s flank again, assisting Ito for another goal. The frustration among German fans grew, and the stadium echoed with boos and whistles at halftime.

In the second half, Germany dominated possession but failed to breach Japan’s solid defense. As they desperately sought an equalizer, Japan added two more goals late in the game, with Asano and Tanaka finding the net. This remarkable and dominant performance by Japan has raised questions about Flick’s future as Germany’s coach.

Despite their historical reluctance to dismiss managers, Germany may need to break from tradition, especially with former Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann seemingly waiting in the wings. Germany’s next challenge is a Tuesday meeting with France in Dortmund, a team likely to exploit the defensive vulnerabilities displayed by the German side.

On the other hand, Japan’s third consecutive victory is a strong preparation for January’s Asia Cup in Qatar, a competition they have won a record four times.