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Europe: UEFA Nations League
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S. Widmer (58)
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Post-match reaction:
Players express frustration, Löw strikes an optimistic tone following 1-1 Switzerland draw

By Peter Vice   @ViceytheSS

As was to be expected, captain Toni Kroos and goal-scorer Ilkay Gündogan declared themselves unsatisfied with a 1-1 draw with the Swiss national side that saw Germany once again fail to attain its first UEFA Nations League Win. Head coach Joachim Löw dealt with the result more stoically.
Joachim Löw.
Joachim Löw.Photo: Granada, CC-by-SA 4.0
Germany’s “Nationalmannschaft” still awaits its first victory in the UEFA Nations League following another 1-1 draw against Switzerland on Sunday. The result leaves Joachim Löw’s outfit winless in six matches since the competition debuted in the autumn of 2018. National team players expressed their disappointment with yet another blown lead in post-match interviews.

“I’m pissed off,” goal-scorer Ilkay Gündogan told the ZDF cameras afterwards, “That really gets on my nerves. What occurred on the conceded goal shouldn’t happen at this level. One could win that game 2-0 or 3-0. We should have played it ice-veined [to the finish]. I don’t know if it's a question of quality, but we have to work more on that.”

Toni Kroos, who had won praise from the country’s press as the essential “midfield metronome” after Thursday’s performance, also expressed his dissatisfaction. “If there are six points up for grabs and one only obtains two, then that’s disappointing, remarked the man donning the captain’s armband in both matches, “there were too many ball losses at the back.”

Bundestrainer Löw echoed Kroos’ sentiments. “We lost too many balls and lacked conviction, the 60-year-old head coach conceded. Löw took care to praise his team as well. “We knew beforehand that it would be difficult at this particular time. That’s related to the fact that all players aren’t at full strength yet.

With a militant forward gaze at the television cameras, Löw concluded that “the boys gave all that was possible at this point in time.” To this, he added “we’ll once again attack properly in October.

The German trainer has more than a few extenuating circumstances to fall back upon. The COVID crisis meant that the German national team was forced to go an unprecedented 289 days without a competitive match; its longest layoff since the second World War.

Furthermore, the scheduling push back that led to the UEFA Champions league being completed only two weeks ago compelled him to leave six of his regular national team players behind when selecting his squad. Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka, Joshua Kimmich, Marcel Halstenberg, Lukas Klostermann, and captain Manuel Neuer were all given a break from national team duties.

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