3 goalscorers, a surprise performance, a return from injury, and plenty of substitutes among the Germans abroad this weekend.
|Antonio Rüdiger.||Photo: Granada, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0|
Some regular performances this weekend from the Germans playing on foreign soil, with the highlight being the shootout between Chelsea vs Brentford that involved four German players.
Chelsea’s Timo Werner, Antonio Rüdiger and Kai Havertz started the disastrous game against Brentford, where the also German Vitaly Janelt started for the Bees and played a surprisingly pivotal role in his side’s 1-4 win.
Chelsea displayed a 4-3-3 formation, with Havertz starting as a false 9 and with Werner wider to the left, practically as a winger. Rüdiger played left to Thiago Silva, forming the pair of center backs.
Timo Werner (Chelsea):
Not accurate with the ball at his feet, performed good runs behind the lines and delivered a generous defensive effort, but was not comfortable and was subbed off at the 64th minute after a poor display.
Kai Havertz (Chelsea):
Completed a decent game, trying to create plays with his movements, but did not look too good in the first half. Being a lot more present and determined in the second one, trying to take advantage of the spaces generated by the frenetic pace of the game at that point; Havertz scored after finishing from a set-piece cross, but was rightfully disallowed for handball, then the ex-Leverkusen could not finish a great opportunity after being left alone against the keeper with a great through pass from Kovacic and had a header that just went wide.
Antonio Rüdiger (Chelsea):
Solid as usual, and his price keeps going higher by the minute, although it was a game with two faces for the center back. Trying to push the play forward when he saw his way clear and with good passes, Rüdiger scored one of the goals of the season in the second half with an absolute missile from 40 meters out with his right foot. However, when Chelsea was down 1-3, the ex-Roma defender made a mistake together with Thiago Silva. Both went to clear the ball inside the penalty box and ended up giving it to Brentford for the 4th goal.
Vitaly Janelt (Brentford):
Man of the match for Brentford. Playing as a left center midfield, Janelt tied Rüdiger’s amazing goal with a superb strike from his own with the left foot, the U-21 European champion accompanied a fast transition after recovery on Chelsea’s defensive third and finished it perfectly.
Brentford turned around the game, making it 1-2, and the German thrived with spaces to run forward; Then the recently renewed Jansen scored his second goal of the night, finishing a beautiful team play by The Bees, making a third man run to finish a great combination with a chip in against Mendy.
Knocking on Die Mannschaft’s door, not only with the goals, but with a solid defensive game too covering well the channels. Was subbed off at the 80th minute.
Ilkay Gündogan (Manchester City):
Started as usual in City’s regular 4-3-3 as a left central midfielder, sure on the passes and key with his links with Cancelo and Foden. Gündogan capped a good team display against a not quite demanding Burnley side by scoring his sixth goal of this Premier League. He also made it 0-2 in the 25th minute with a crossed shot with the help of the keeper after Sterling’s assist, occupied spaces going forward while helping Rodri with the balance of the team.
Robin Koch (Leeds):
Stayed on the bench for Leeds against Southampton.
Pascal Groß (Brighton):
Completed the full 90s in Brighton’s 0-0 tie with Norwich City. Playing a good game as a holding midfielder, positioning himself a bit to the right to allow Alexis Macalister to reach the base of the play to start the buildup, Groß was a great defensive presence and maintained Brighton's balance. Lukas Rupp and Christoph Zimmerman did not play for Norwich.
Toni Kroos (Real Madrid):
Completed a fairly good performance in Real Madrid's polemic 1-2 victory against Celta de Vigo, managing his team tempo and build-up with his trademark passes.
Kroos offered a constant passing option and had to avoid Celta’s intensive pressing; Madrid’s number 8 suffered, as well as Casemiro and Modric, the fast transitions Celta proposed offensively and the gap left between Madrid’s front and midfield lines when Los Blancos tried to press high, with Celta jumping this line fairly easy. Was subbed off in the 85th minute of the game with 1-2 on the scoreboard.
Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (Barcelona):
Despite facing a very hard opponent in Sevilla FC, the keeper from Mönchengladbach had a relatively calm night on his side 1-0 victory, making 3 saves and a clearance against a Sevilla FC that did not reach Ter Stegen’s area frequently.
Shkodran Mustafi (Levante):
Played 15 minutes in Levante’s surprise victory against Bayern’s UCL rivals Villarreal. Entered at the 76th minute and held up Villareal’s late charges well.
Kevin Volland, Alexander Nübel and Ismail Jakobs (Monaco):
Just one of the Germans played against Metz, as Kevin Volland was not in the squad as he is recovering from nasopharyngitis, while Ismail Jakobs lost his starting spot on the left side of the defense to Caio Henrique, with the performance from the Brazilian making it hard for the German to recover it.
Goalkeeper Alexander Nübel had a quite calm afternoon, he was not challenged much during the game, making four saves with just one of them being difficult; the German keeper was beaten by an amazing bicycle kick after a corner.
Thilo Kehrer (PSG):
Did not start and entered at the 80th minute for Danilo, played as a right-center back in PSG’s offensive line of three, allowing Hakimi to act as a Wing-back. Julian Draxler did not play.
Jerome Boateng (Lyon):
Started for Lyon, the ex-Bayern defender was not very sharp during the match, erratic on the anticipations and slow on the defensive transition. Angers’ first goal came after he mistakenly let by a cross to the heart of the area, not knowing how to clear it. He had the opportunity to score with a header, but was denied by the keeper. Subbed off at the 70th minute.
Robin Gosens (Inter Milan):
Entered the match in the 90th minute, with testimonial presence in Inter’s key victory against Juventus 1-0.
Diego Demme (Napoli):
Did not play for Napoli against Atalanta.
Jeremy Toljan (Sassuolo):
Played 15 minutes in Sassuolo’s defeat against Lazio.
Mario Götze and Phillip Max (PSV):
Both completed the 90 minutes in a thrilling match with PSV against a Twente FC side that at some point was 3-0 up. However, the game ended in a tie thanks to a last-minute goal from Boscagli.
Götze positioned himself a bit inclined to the left side of the midfield in Roger Schmidt’s lineup, linking up with Max and playing through balls whenever possible, making 5 key passes throughout the game, assisting the temporal 3-2, and having a very high passing accuracy; still shows he is fit to play for Die Mannschaft, certainly fitter than Draxler.
Phillip Max also wants to enter the race for the World Cup squad; Although the left-back was attacked quite constantly during the match, with one of the goals coming from a cross from his side, the ex-Augsburg defender performed fairly well, with his constant runs and crosses being a threat for Twente.
Karim Adeyemi (RB Salzburg):
The RB Salzburg forward returned to play 30 minutes after the injury that left him unable to participate with Die Mannschaft, was very participative although showing signs of that time off the field. Was decisive as his low cross found Junuzović with a bit of luck and rebounded to score the 2-1 winner in the 94th minute.
On Monday in their respective leagues, Nadiem Amiri (Genoa) faces Koray Günter (Hellas Verona), while Bern Leno could play for Arsenal.