Spain vs Germany
Neither Spain, nor Germany will consider the prospect of sitting back here. Enrique’s men will look to control the game through teenage sensations Gavi and Pedri, and will push forward in order to wrap up qualification early.
After a loss in their opening game, the Germans are in desperate need of all 3 points, and simply can’t afford to sit back and let Spain dominate proceedings.
Spain’s opening World Cup fixture makes for good reading with regards to goals. 7 were scored from 8 shots on target, and La Furia Roja amassed an incredibly impressive xG of 3.53.
The nation’s stats from World Cup Qualifying are more than good enough. An average of 1.88 goals per game, and an xG of 1.98 P/90 highlights that Spain are creating regular chances.
The Nations League too, emphasised Spain’s ability to score against top opponents. Despite just 8 goals in 6, they scored in all of these fixtures.
What the Germans will take confidence from is a shaky Spain back line. Shutout against Costa Rica aside, things weren’t as comfortable in World Cup Qualifying, or the Nations League.
Spain conceded 5 goals in each competition, despite xGA’s of 0.70 and 0.96 respectively. The likes of Georgia, Kosovo, and Greece all scored against the European giants in qualifying. In the Nations League, they were only able to keep 2 clean sheets in 6.
The Spain backline tends to struggle when teams look to run at them directly with pace, something that Germany possesses in abundance.
Despite their loss to Japan, the Germans racked up a shot count of 26, and an xG of 3.21. 2 goals conceded from an xGA of 1.45 suggests they’re leaky at the back however.
Germany were phenomenal in World Cup qualifying, scoring 36, with an xG of 3.15 P/90. But of even greater significance, is their Nations League form.
11 goals scored, and 9 conceded in 6 games shows that the goals were flying in at both ends. In particular, an xGA of 1.53 against the top nations shows an inherent weakness in the defence.
The stats tell you all you need to know here, and both teams should score in what is set to be one of the best games at the World Cup so far.