Fri 27 May 2022 | 14:29

Goretzka: No World Cup targets set by Germany ahead of Nations League

Leon Goretzka has played for Germany in two unsuccessful competitions and claims that Hansi Flick's team has failed to set any World Cup goals.

After two disastrous World Cups, Leon Goretzka says Germany is not setting any concrete World Cup aims but expects to "create a positive impression" in their next UEFA Nations League games ahead of their travel to Qatar.


Bayern Munich

playmaker has 41 matches for his country, netting 14 goals, although his national team has had minimal tournament achievement, appearing in dismal campaigns at the 2018 World Cup and Euro 2020. 

Germany was ousted in the group stages of the 2018 World Cup in Russia before being defeated in the last 16 of the 2018 Euros by England, and will also lose out on qualifying for the Nations League semi-finals in 2020-21.

Goretzka, who was injured in a pre-tournament friendly and missed Germany's 2014 World Cup success, recalled those terrible experiences while insisting that Hansi Flick's team had yet to establish any goals for their journey to Qatar.

When asked if winning the event was a feasible goal by Sky Sports Germany, the 27-year-old replied:

"Answering the question doesn't do us much good. 

"We'll play our Nations League games first and see that we make a good impression and can go to the World Cup free. 

"I've already taken part in tournaments where we were considered one of the favourites and we failed quite a bit. Then there were tournaments where nobody expected us [to perform well] and we won. 

"Basically, we are an absolute footballing nation with great successes in the past, and accordingly we have our expectations in such a competition."

Germany has been placed in a difficult Group E for the event, which includes Japan, Costa Rica, or New Zealand, and Spain, after losing 6-0 to La Roja in November 2020. 

Flick's team has a number of challenging Nations League matches ahead of them, including a home match against England and a double-header against European champions Italy, which Goretzka feels will put Germany to the test after Flick won eight of his first nine games as coach.

"The opponents we have now are much more important," he added. "These are top games at the very highest level.

"We haven't had one under Hansi yet, so [with] many games against top opponents, which is why we made a good impression. Now we can prove that at another level, higher up."

Goretzka, however, had an injury-plagued season at Bayern Munich, appearing in just 19 league games as Julian Nagelsmann's side won the


trophy, less than Marcel Sabitzer (25), Joshua Kimmich (28), and Jamal Musiala (29). (30).

Despite their domestic domination, the midfielder stated Bayern's

Champions League

quarter-final elimination to Villarreal meant the team's season "wasn't sufficient," and that he is looking forward to a stronger season next season. 

"We have a lot of things to improve. We played a pretty good, if not excellent, first half of the season. We were in the flow then," he added.

"You can't say that about the second half of the season. We weren't up to par in the important games - that wasn't Bayern-like. Getting kicked out in the Champions League hasn't happened to us against such an opponent in recent years. 

"That's why this season overall wasn't satisfactory, but that's what makes many in the club extremely motivated to do better next year."


source: SportMob

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