Germany take on Hungary on Wednesday in their final group stage fixture of Euro 2020, where a win could see them finish top of the group.
After a rather concerning defeat to France in their opening game of the tournament, Germany bounced back with a 4-2 thrashing of Portugal to remind everyone of their credentials. Consider that France must face Portugal in their final game, and suddenly Die Mannschaft hold the keys to the group all of a sudden.
Hungary will be no pushovers, however. Despite being written off by most having been drawn in such a stacked group, they carved out a point and held France to a draw on matchday two, meaning they could sneak into the knockout stages with a shock win.
Here’s 90min‘s preview of the group F clash.
We take a look at the starting XI Joachim Low is likely to field for his side’s crucial final match of Group F as they face Hungary at the Allianz Arena.
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When is kick off? Wednesday 23 June, 20:00 (BST)
Where is the match being played? Allianz Arena
What TV channel is it on? BBC Two/BBC iPlayer
Referee? Sergei Karasev
VAR? Massimiliano Irrati
Thomas Muller is a serious doubt for the contest having picked up a knee injury against Germany, while Lucas Klostermann also trained away from the squad. Leroy Sane is expected to replace his fellow Bayern Munich forward.
While Joachim Low waits to see if Muller can prove his fitness before the match, Mats Hummels and Ilkay Gundogan both trained with the rest of the team and are expected to be involved.
Striker Adam Szalai was forced off in Hungary’s draw with France with a head injury, and it remains uncertain whether or not he will be available for selection.
Should he be out, Marco Rossi could turn to Nemanja Nikolic. The 33-year-old forward featured as a substitute against Les Bleus as Szalai was replaced and is the like for like adjustment.
Germany: Neuer; Ginter, Hummels, Rudiger; Kimmich, Gundogan, Kroos, Gosens; Havertz; Sane, Gnabry.
Hungary: Gulasci; Botka, Orban, Szalai; Nego, Kleinheisler, Nagy, Schafer, Fiola; Sallai, Nikolic.
It was Muller who was on the scoresheet when these two sides last met in 2016, with Germany running out 2-0 winners.
Of the 33 times the two sides have played, Germany do have the better record, but barely. Die Mannschaft have chalked up 13 wins, while Hungary have actually managed ten of their own.
Hungary have shown admirable fight considering the hand they’ve been dealt heading into Euro 2020.
Before the tournament began, nobody had given them a chance of getting out of the groups, but a draw with France has suddenly thrown them well into contention.
Germany, for as resurgent as they looked against Portugal, still have plenty to prove and fragilities and uncertainty are marring the squad. Losing Muller could also be a significant blow, but the objective is simple: win the game.
If there was ever time for an upset, though, this one feels rather apt.
Prediction: Germany 1-1 Hungary