Germany - Switzerland

Europe: UEFA Nations League
Germany T. Werner (28), K. Havertz (55), S. Gnabry (60)
RheinEnergieStadion3-3
Switzerland M. Gavranović (5), R. Freuler (26), M. Gavranović (56), F. Schär (90)
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Joachim Löw defends three-at-the-back system after criticism

By Rune Gjerulff

Joachim Löw has defended his decision to play with three at the back amid criticism from German pundits and journalists.

Joachim Löw.
Joachim Löw.Photo: GEPA Pictures/Roger Petzsche

Germany coach Joachim Löw has defended his tactics following the criticism he has received after last week's 3-3 friendly draw with Turkey and 2-1 win over Ukraine in the UEFA Nations League.


German football pundits and journalists have called for Löw to switch from three to four at the back for Tuesday's UEFA Nations League clash with Switzerland.

Speaking at the pre-match press conference, Löw said he could revert to a four-man backline without any problems if needed, but he wants the players to get fully used to his three-at-the-back system ahead of next year's European Championship.

"The most important thing is that we are true to our philosophy. This has nothing to do with the system. In any case, no matter if we play with three or four at the back, I want my full-backs to be high up the pitch," Löw told reporters.

"It's all about playing the ball around on the ground and occupying space. Where can I trigger dynamics? That's the most important thing. In this regard, there are no big differences between the systems. We always have an attacking focus, because we often have the ball – even if we have a three-man backline – and the players are constantly shifting positions anyway.

"We're capable of playing with four at the back, because that's what most of our players do at their respective clubs. But we want an alternative so we can play and use our fast players differently next year. Especially against teams like France or Portugal, this can be important. I want us to be able to play in two different ways at the European Championship. The team should be prepared for both systems and must be able to implement things immediately. We don't have 300 training sessions a year, so we have to learn things quickly."

Germany lock horns with Switzerland in Köln on Tuesday.


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