World champions Germany continue their bid to reach the Confederations Cup final. Joachim Loew’s experimental side is due to face Mexico, who are on a mission to dismiss the underdogs’ tag and grab their chance to fight for the trophy.
Germany international team bounced back in style from their Euro 2016 disappointment. The 2-0 semi-final defeat at the hands of tournament hosts France sparked an unbeaten run which is currently stretching to 13 matches in a row. Germany had a perfect start to their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign, currently topping Group C with maximum 18 points to their name. The 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup came as a distraction for the reigning champions, but also as a saluted opportunity for manager Joachim Loew to test a number of players that could go on to form the future backbone of the national team. Without key players such as Mesut Ozil, Manuel Neuer, Jerome Boateng among others in their squad, Die Mannschaft pushed the likes Emre Can, Julian Draxler and Leon Goretzka under the spotlight. The aforementioned players lived up to the expectations, having guided Germany to top spot in Group B on the back of two wins and one draw. Loew’s men want to win the tournament seen as the World Cup rehearsal and will do their best to overcome Mexico.
Leon Goretzka should be recalled to the starting line-up after being left on the bench for the Cameroon game. Joachim Loew will not have any selection issues for the semi-final.
Underdogs hoping to surprise
Back-to-back victories over New Zealand and Russia will have done wonders to Mexico’s confidence ahead of what is expected to be a tantalising encounter with World champions. Juan Carlos Osorio’s men are heading into the Confederations Cup as Group A runners-up, well aware of the challenge that lies ahead. El Tri are nevertheless determined to ditch the underdogs’ label and put in their top display when it is most needed. Mexico suffered in the tournament’s opener against Portugal, but showed improvement in the next two matches. Osorio’s men are still struggling defensively, given the fact they conceded in all group stage matches so that is one segment of his team’s play Juan Carlos Osorio will have to address. Mexico are tough to break and this trait of theirs has been well documented in Russia. With recent PSV recruit Hirving Lozano in excellent form it will be exciting to see what surprises El Tri might have prepared for their more illustrious opponents.
Mexico will be without suspended Guardado, whereas Diego Reyes is also likely to miss the Germany game. Rafa Marquez could step in to deputise.
Top pick: Germany 2.05 (21/20) @Bet365
Alternative pick 1: Both teams to score – yes 1.80 (4/5) @Betfair
Alternative pick 2: Germany & BTTS 4/1 (5.00) @WilliamHill