Despite failing to book their place in Russia, Austria come into this fixture in excellent form. The hosts have won each of their last six fixtures, while they’ve kept a clean sheet in each of their last three. Wednesday’s win over Russia will have given Franco Foda’s men the confidence required to take on the world champions, though facing a menacing Germany side is likely to be far tougher than taking on a relatively weak Russian outfit.
Having played a couple of friendlies back in March, neither of which they won, this will be the Germans first warm-up game ahead of the World Cup. Given the rather unusually bad form of his side – the world champions have failed to win any of their last five matches – manager Joachim Löw will be hoping to see improvements in this match. However, the result is largely irrelevant as far as the visitors are concerned and their may even be some experimentation done as Löw looks to work out his best set up ahead of this month’s huge tournament.
As one of football’s biggest and best nations, Germany are always hard to go against, though with this being a friendly, coupled with the fact that they’ve not been in great form of late, its not all that difficult to avoid the visitors at the seemingly stingy prices. With the winning the way it is, the selection that stands out is ‘Under 2.5 Goals’.
Germany are sometimes a tough side to stop but their performances against both Spain and Brazil in March were far from convincing, especially from an attacking point of view. Against Brazil in particular, Die Mannschaft, who managed just a single shot on target, were particularly weak offensively. They do of course have plenty of forward talent and Austria should be easier to face, though they may not be looking to go all out in this one.
Aside from their most recent exploits, Germany have a rather low-key record in friendlies in recent times. Just one goal went in when they lost against Brazil last time out, while there wasn’t too much to talk about when they drew 1-1 with Spain prior to that. What’s more, the Germans have struggled to put their best foot forward when playing friendlies away from home over the last few years. Since 2015, the Germans are without a win in away friendlies, while they’ve scored just one goal during that time. Interestingly, all four of those friendlies have seen less than three goals go in.
In beating Russia 1-0 last time out, Austria acquitted themselves reasonably well, but they failed to carry as much of a threat as was perhaps anticipated. As they were unable to really get at a weak Russian back-line, it’s easy to see the hosts faltering against the very defensively astute Germans. However, having kept two clean sheets in their last two at home, the hosts may fancy themselves to frustrate a German side who’ve misfired a tad of late.
All in all, with the Germans likely to be nowhere near the peak of their powers, coupled with the fact that they’ve struggled to put their best foot forward in recent friendlies, a low-key affair is expected to unfold. On this basis, ‘Under 2.5 Goals’ gets the nod.
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Germany have an excellent recent record against Austria. The visitors come into this match having won each of the last nine renewals of this fixture. Most recently, when facing each other in 2013, Germany won by three goals nil.
Austria may make a few changes after Wednesday’s friendly. Thomas Murg will be hoping to win his first cap, while both David Alaba and Kevin Wimmer could feature from the start having been benched last time out.
Joachim Löw will have his recently announced World Cup squad, which includes all the usual names other than Mario Götze and André Schürrle, to choose from. If opting to experiment a tad, new boys such as Nils Peterson and Jonathon Tah could feature.