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Germany national football team
From 1950 to 1990, the team was called West Germany in English, as since World War II, the DFB is based in the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) which was commonly referred to as West Germany from 1949 to 1990. The DFB continues to field the German national team that had been fully reinstated by FIFA after the 1950 FIFA World Cup, retaining all records and traditions. Under Allied occupation and division, two other separate national teams had also been recognized by FIFA, the Saarland team (1950–1956), and the East German team (1952–1990). Both have been absorbed into the current national team, along with their records (caps and goal scorers). The official name and code "Germany FR (FRG)" was shortened again to "Germany (GER)" in 1990.
Germany is one of the three most successful national teams at international competitions, having won a total of three World Cups and three European championships. They are also one of the most consistent teams. Aside from winning three world and continental titles, they were also runners-up three times in the European Championships, four times in the World Cup and won 3rd place in the World Cup three times as well. East Germany won Olympic Gold in 1976. German along with Brazil are the only nations to have won both the men's and women's World Cups.
The current coaching staff of the national team include head coach Joachim Löw, assistant coach Hans-Dieter Flick, goalkeeper coach Andreas Köpke, athletic coach Mark Verstegen, athletic coach Oliver Schmidtlein, scout Urs Siegenthaler, technical director Matthias Sammer and team manager Oliver Bierhoff.
Between 1899 and 1901, prior to the formation of a national side, there were five unofficial international matches between different German and English selection teams, which all ended as large defeats for the German teams. Eight years after the establishment of the German Football Association (DFB), the first official match of the Germany national football team was played on 5 April 1908, against Switzerland at Basel, with the Swiss winning 5-3. Coincidentally, the first match after World War I in 1920, the first match after World War II in 1950 when Germany was still banned from most international competitions, and the first match in 1990 with former East German players were all against Switzerland as well. Germany's first championship title was even won in Switzerland.
At that time, the players were selected by the DFB as there was no dedicated coach. The first manager of the Germany national team was Otto Nerz, a school teacher from Mannheim, who served in the role from 1923 to 1936. The German FA could not afford travel to Uruguay for the first World Cup staged in 1930 during the Great Depression, but finished third in the 1934 World Cup in their first appearance in the competition. After a poor showing at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, Sepp Herberger became coach. In 1937 he put together a squad which was soon nicknamed the Breslau Elf (the Breslau Eleven) in recognition of their 8-0 win over Denmark in the then German city of Breslau, Lower Silesia (now Wroclaw, Poland).
After Austria became part of Germany in the Anschluss of March 1938, that country's national team – one of Europe's better sides at the time due to professionalism – was disbanded despite having already qualified for the 1938 World Cup. As required by Nazi politicians, five or six ex-Austrian players, from the clubs Rapid Wien, Austria Wien, Vienna Wien, were ordered to join the all-German team on short notice in a staged show of unity orchestrated for political reasons. In the 1938 World Cup that began on 4 June, this "united" German team managed only a 1-1 draw against Switzerland, and then lost the replay 2-4 in front of a hostile crowd in Paris, France. That early exit stands as Germany's worst ever World Cup result.
During World War II, the team played over 30 international games between September 1939 and November 1942, when national team games was suspended as most players had to join the armed forces. Many of the national team players were gathered together under coach Herberger as Luftwaffen-SV Hamburg through the efforts of a sympathetic air force officer trying to protect the footballers from the most dangerous wartime service.
Three German teams
After the Second World War, Germany was banned from competition in most sports until about 1950, with none of the three new German states, West Germany, East Germany and Saarland, entering the 1950 FIFA World Cup qualifiers as the DFB was only reinstated as full FIFA member after this World Cup.
As in most aspects of life, the pre-war traditions and organisations of Germany were carried on by the Federal Republic of Germany, which was referred to as West Germany. This applied also to the restored DFB which had its headquarters in Frankfurt am Main and still employed coach Sepp Herberger. With recognition by FIFA and UEFA, the DFB maintained and continued the record of the pre-war team. Neighboring Switzerland was once again the first team that would play (now West) Germany in 1950, with Turkey and Republic of Ireland being the only non-German speaking nations to play them in friendly matches during 1951.
After only 18 post war games in total, West Germany had qualified for the 1954 World Cup, having prevailed against Norway and the "third German state", the Saarland.
Main article: Saarland national football team
The Saar protectorate, otherwise known as Saarland, had been split from Germany and put under French control between 1947 and 1956. Saarland did not want to join French organisations and was barred from participating in pan-German ones. Thus, they sent separate teams to the 1952 Summer Olympics and also to the 1954 World Cup qualifiers, when Saarland finished below West Germany but above Norway in their qualification group, having won in Oslo. Legendary coach Helmut Schön was the manager of the Saarland team from 1952 until 1957, when the territory acceded to the Federal Republic of Germany. He went on to coach the championship-winning team of the 1970s.
East Germany national football team
In 1949, the socialist German Democratic Republic was founded in the Soviet-occupied central part of Germany (most of the eastern part was put under Polish administration). From 1952 onwards they were represented by a separate FA and its East Germany national football team. East Germany were also the only team able to beat the West German team that won the 1974 World Cup, a highly symbolic event for both sides of the nation, which remained the only meeting of both teams. East Germany went on to win the gold medal at the 1976 Olympics. After the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989, the GDR dissolved itself, its new federal states joined the Federal Republic of Germany in the German reunification in 1990, and the football clubs and players joined the DFB.
Das Wunder von Bern
West Germany, captained by Fritz Walter, met in the 1954 World Cup some of the teams they had played in friendly matches, namely Turkey, Yugoslavia and Austria. When playing favorites Hungary in the group stage, with good chances to qualify for the next round even in case of defeat, coach Sepp Herberger did not field his best players, saving them from the experience of a 3-8 loss. West Germany would go on to meet Hungary again in the final, facing the legendary team of Mighty Magyars again, which had gone unbeaten for 32 consecutive matches. In a shocking upset, West Germany came back from an early two goal deficit to win 3-2, with Helmut Rahn scoring the winning goal with only six minutes remaining. The success is called "The Miracle of Bern" (Das Wunder von Bern). The unexpected victory created a sense of euphoria throughout a divided postwar Germany. The triumph is credited with playing a significant role in securing the postwar ideological foundation of the Federal Republic of Germany.
Memorable losses: Wembley goal and Game of the Century
After finishing fourth in the 1958 World Cup and reaching only the quarter-finals in the 1962 World Cup, the DFB had to make changes. Following examples set abroad, professionalism was introduced, and the best clubs from the various Regionalligas were assembled into the new Bundesliga. In 1964, Helmut Schön took over as coach, replacing Herberger who had been in office for 28 years.
In the 1966 World Cup, West Germany reached the final after beating the USSR in the semifinal, facing hosts England at Wembley Stadium. Wolfgang Weber's last minute goal took the game into extra time, a goal claimed to be controversial by the English, with the ball appearing to hit the hand of a German player as it travelled through the England penalty area before he prodded it in. The first extra time goal by Geoff Hurst, nicknamed Wembley-Tor (Wembley goal) in Germany, is still controversial after all this time. Later video evidence indicates that the ball never crossed the line after hitting the crossbar. As the Swiss referee did not see the situation properly, the opinion of the Soviet linesman Tofik Bakhramov who believed that the ball bounced back from the net rather than the crossbar led to one of the most contentious goals in the history of football. While the Germans pushed hard to tie the game, spectators entered the field in the final seconds, and Hurst scored another controversial goal giving England a 4-2 win.
West Germany gained a measure of revenge in the 1970 World Cup by knocking England out in the quarter-finals 3-2, having been 2-0 down, before they suffered another memorable extra time loss, this time in the semi-final against Italy at Estadio Azteca. Karl-Heinz Schnellinger scored during injury time to level the match at 1-1, and during extra time, both teams held the lead at one time. Memorably, Franz Beckenbauer remained on the field even with a dislocated shoulder, his arm in a sling strapped to his body, as West Germany had used up their two allowed substitutions. Eventually won 4-3 by Italy, this match with five goals in extra time is one of the most dramatic in World Cup history, and is called "Game of the Century" in both Italy (Partita del secolo) and Germany (Jahrhundertspiel). While the exhausted Italians lost to Brazil, West Germany went on to claim third place by beating Uruguay 1-0, and Gerd Müller finished as the tournament top scorer with 10 goals.
World Cup title on home soil
In 1971, Franz Beckenbauer became captain of the national side, and he led West Germany to great success as they became both the European and World Champions. They won the European Championship at their first attempt in Euro 72, after beating the Soviet Union 3-0 in the final. Then as hosts of the 1974 World Cup, they won their second World Cup, after beating the Netherlands 2-1 in the final at the Olympiastadion.
Two matches in the 1974 World Cup stood out for West Germany. The first group stage saw a politically charged match as West Germany played a game against East Germany. Both teams already were qualified for advance to the next round, and the East Germans won 1-0. The West Germans adjusted their line up after the loss and advanced to the final which was the other outstanding match, against the Johan Cruijff-led Dutch team and their brand of "Total Football". Cruijff was brought down early in the German penalty area following a solo run before any of the German players had even touched the ball, and the Dutch took the lead from the ensuing penalty with just a minute gone on the clock. However, West Germany managed to come back, tying the match on a penalty scored by Paul Breitner, and winning it with Gerd Müller's goal just before half-time. A second goal by Müller was ruled offside.
Late 1970s and early 1980s
West Germany failed to defend their titles in the next two major international tournaments. First they lost to Czechoslovakia in the final of Euro 76 in a penalty shootout by a score of 5-3, after the match finished 2-2, with Uli Hoeneß famously kicking the ball sky high. Since that loss, Germany has not lost a penalty shootout in major international tournaments. In fact, the last penalty missed by a German player dates back to the semi-finals of the 1982 World Cup when French goalkeeper Jean-Luc Ettori saved Uli Stielike's shot.
Then in the 1978 World Cup, they were eliminated in the second group stage after losing 3-2 to Austria which was already eliminated at that time, but surprised the Germans with their zeal to beat them anyway. Schön retired as coach afterwards, and the post was taken over by his assistant Jupp Derwall.
West Germany's first tournament under Derwall was successful, as they won Euro 80 after beating Belgium 2-1 in the final, their second European title. West Germany then reached the final of the 1982 World Cup, but not without difficulties. They were upset 2-1 by Algeria in their first match, but managed to sneak into the second round with a controversial 1-0 win over Austria as the result advanced both teams at the expense of the Algerians. Then in their semi-final against France, they came back from 3-1 down during extra time to tie the match 3-3, and won the following penalty shootout 5-4. In the final, they were defeated by Italy by a score of 3-1.
During the period of the 1970s and 80s, West Germany also achieved small success at the Olympic Games, most notably in the 1988 Olympics, when they won the bronze medal, while also reaching the Second Round in both 1972 and 1984. In the 1972 Olympics, West Germany played against East Germany in the second group stage, losing 3-2, one of only two major matches between the two German teams (the other one being the 1974 World Cup Group match, which also was won – 1-0 – by East Germany).
Toni Schumacher, along with Sergio Goycochea, holds the record for the most World Cup penalty shootout saves, with four. He saved two against France in 1982 and another two against Mexico in 1986.
West Germany also has one of the world's most productive goal scorers in Gerd Müller, who racked up fourteen goals in just two World Cups. His ten goals in 1970 are the third most in a tournament, just behind France's Just Fontaine and Hungarian Sándor Kocsis. Though Müller's all time Finals score was broken by Ronaldo in 2006, it took the latter three tournaments to do so (1998, 2002, 2006). France's Just Fontaine is in third place all-time, with thirteen goals, all scored at the 1958 World Cup.
Beckenbauer's triumph as coach
After being eliminated in the first round of Euro 84, Franz Beckenbauer returned to the national team as coach to replace Derwall. In the 1986 World Cup, West Germany finished as runners-up for the second consecutive tournament, after again beating France 2-0 in the semi-finals, but losing to the Diego Maradona-led Argentina 3-2 in the final. In Euro 88, West Germany's hopes of winning the tournament on home soil were spoiled by the Netherlands, as the Dutch gained revenge of their loss in 1974 by beating them 2-1 in the semi-final.
In the 1990 World Cup, West Germany finally won their third World Cup title in the unprecedented third consecutive final appearance. Captained by Lothar Matthäus, they defeated Yugoslavia (4-1), UAE (5-1), the Netherlands (2-1), Czechoslovakia (1-0), and England (1-1, 4-3 on penalty kicks) on the way to a final rematch against Argentina. In a dull match, West Germany won 1-0 with the only goal being a penalty scored in the 85th minute by Andreas Brehme. Beckenbauer, who won the title as captain in 1974, thus became the second person (after Mário Zagallo) to have won the World Cup as both a player and a coach, and the first as both a captain and a coach.
Olympic medal record
Bronze 1988 Seoul Team
Prior to 1988, Olympic football was an amateur event, meaning that only non-professional players could participate. Due to this, West Germany was never able to achieve the same degree of success at the Olympics as at the World Cup, with the only medal coming in the 1988 Olympics, when they won the bronze. Since then, however, no German team ever managed to qualify for the Olympics again. West Germany also reached the Second Round in both 1972, and 1984. This is in contrast to the success of East Germany which won a gold, a silver and two bronze medals (one representing the United Team of Germany).
After Reunification: Berti Vogts
In February 1990, months after the fall of the Berlin wall, the draw for the 1992 European Championship qualifying tournament had seen East Germany and West Germany drawn together in Group 5, scheduled to start in September. After the World Cup win, with assistant Berti Vogts taking over as the national team coach, the retiring Beckenbauer infamously predicted that the German team, with additional former East Germans to choose from, would be invincible for years to come. The reunification of Germany was confirmed in August to take effect on 3 October 1990, with the access of the former GDR to the Federal Republic of Germany. The members of the East German association Deutscher Fußball-Verband acceded to the DFB in November, while the 1990/91 seasons would continue, with the leagues being restructured for 1991/92. The first game which saw a unified German team including former East German internationals such as Matthias Sammer and Ulf Kirsten was against Switzerland on 19 December.
In Euro 92, Germany reached the final, but lost 2-0 to surprise winners Denmark. As defending champions in the 1994 World Cup, they were upset 2-1 in the quarter-finals by Bulgaria after taking the lead.
Germany won their first major international title after the reunification at Euro 96, becoming European champions for the third time. They defeated England, who were the hosts, again on penalty kicks (6-5, after a 1-1 draw) in the semi-finals, and the Czech Republic 2-1 in the final, a match decided by a golden goal scored by Oliver Bierhoff.
However, in the 1998 World Cup, Germany were again eliminated by a less heralded opponent in the quarter-finals, this time in a 3-0 rout by Croatia. Vogts stepped down afterwards and was replaced by Erich Ribbeck.
Oliver Kahn/Michael Ballack Era
Entering the 21st century, Germany's standing as one of the best national sides in the world, and as of a team that almost always reaches the later rounds of major tournaments, was starting to be discouraged by disappointing results.
In Euro 2000, the aging team went out in the first round after failing to win any of their three matches, including a 1-0 defeat to rivals England and an embarrassing 3-0 loss to a second-string Portugal side (the Portuguese having already advanced). Rudi Völler replaced Ribbeck as coach, initially on a temporary basis, and later permanently after planned successor Christoph Daum was involved in a drug scandal.
Coming into the 2002 World Cup, expectations of the German team were low, due to poor results in the qualifiers, including a 5-1 home defeat against England. However, they started out strong by thrashing Saudi Arabia 8-0 in their first match. At the knockout stages, they produced three consecutive 1-0 wins, against Paraguay, the United States, and co-hosts South Korea, setting up a final against Brazil, the first World Cup meeting between the two. However, with the pivotal Michael Ballack suspended due to accumulated yellow cards, Germany's chances had declined. In a hard-fought match, Germany lost 2-0. German captain and goalkeeper Oliver Kahn won the Golden Ball, the first time in the World Cup's history a goalkeeper was named best player of the tournament. Simultaneously, he won the Yashin-Award as the best goalkeeper.
Germany failed to build on their success in 2002, and again exited in the first round of Euro 2004 without winning a match. As was the case in 2000, the Germans bowed out after losing to the second-string side of a team that had already advanced, in this case that of the Czech Republic, in a match where Germany dominated but couldn't get the ball into the net, losing to a Czech goal scored on the break. Völler resigned afterwards, denouncing the constant media criticism in a famous TV interview, and the national team had to find their third new coach in six years, after having had only six coaches in the previous 75 years. As prospective candidates including Ottmar Hitzfeld and Otto Rehhagel turned down the job, former national team player Jürgen Klinsmann, who had never held any coaching jobs before, was appointed. In similar style to Beckenbauer's former role as team manager without a coaching license, the experienced Joachim Löw from Stuttgart would assist him. Klinsmann made Michael Ballack the captain following Euro 2004. Klinsmann's main task was to lead the national team to a good showing at the 2006 World Cup, which Germany were going to host. Although the host nation, hopes prior to the start of the tournament proper were not as high for Germany as in previous tournaments, even in Germany itself. Critics had pointed out the apparent lack of quality players in the squad and coach Klinsmann's decision to live in America rather than Germany.
Germany, however, won the opening game of the World Cup against Costa Rica 4-2. They continued to develop both confidence and support across the group stage, conceding no further goals as they beat Poland 1-0 and Ecuador 3-0, with Miroslav Klose scoring twice and Lukas Podolski adding another in the last match. Germany finished on top of the group with three wins.
The team went on to defeat Sweden 2-0 in the round of 16, with Lukas Podolski netting both goals in only 12 minutes, from assists by Miroslav Klose.
People watching the Germany vs. Argentina match at the Donau Arena in Regensburg
Germany faced favourites Argentina in the quarter-finals, a team that Germany had not defeated since the 1990 World Cup. Germany's shutout streak was broken shortly after half time as Argentina scored first to grab a 1-0 lead. However, Michael Ballack's cross, flicked on by Tim Borowski, allowed Klose to head in the equalizer with 10 minutes to spare. During penalties, Jens Lehmann stopped two spot kicks while his teammates made all of the necessary goals to win the decisive shootout 4 - 2. Afterwards, the Argentinians started a brawl, which later, after Italian TV showed video footage of Torsten Frings participating in the brawl, resulted in a ban for him.
These results produced much expectation in Germany, many thinking that a record eighth appearance at the final was possible even though a vital player was missing, and the team was tired after going the full distance against one of the best teams. Taking the semi-final against Italy to extra time again, hopes grew high that yet another penalty shoot-out would take the team to the final in Berlin. Despite Klinsmann's focus on fitness, speed and concentration of German players faded, conceding two goals in the dying ninety seconds of the extra time.
Despite having their dreams of playing in the final dashed, Klinsmann's squad quickly recovered their composure, and journalists noted the team's upbeat mood in the practices after the semi-final. Three starters, including captain Michael Ballack, would not be available for the third place match. They faced the Portuguese team, with goalkeeper Ricardo having only conceded one goal in regular play. Nonetheless, Germany thoroughly routed Portugal 3-1, at one point being up three goals to nil from Bastian Schweinsteiger's two goals and an own goal, also off his shot, by Portugal's Petit.
Germany managed to end the World Cup on a high, not only with a 3-1 win over Portugal in the battle for third place, but also with several awards: Miroslav Klose was awarded the Golden Boot for his tournament-leading five goals, becoming the first player from the united Germany to earn it, and fellow striker Lukas Podolski won the 'Best Young Player' award. Furthermore, four of Germany's players (Jens Lehmann, Philipp Lahm, Michael Ballack and Miroslav Klose) were selected for the 'Mastercard All-Star Team'. In addition, at 14 goals scored, the German side put away more goals than any other team. At the end of the tournament, more than 500,000 people celebrated the team's closing ceremony by giving them a heroes welcome at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. Germany had a much better World Cup than many – at home and abroad ever believed possible.
Germany's entry into the Euro 2008 qualifying round was marked, not least, by the promotion of Joachim Löw to coach. In a group with the Czech Republic and the Republic of Ireland among others, Germany qualified comfortably, defeating San Marino in a historic 13-0 record away win on the way.
For the final tournament, Germany were placed into Group B alongside Poland, Croatia and longtime rivals Austria. Germany won 2-0 to Poland, but suffered an ignominious 2-1 defeat at the hands of Croatia, compounded by a red card for Bastian Schweinsteiger for an aggressive off-the-ball incident. Germany finally entered the knockout round with the victory over Austria in the last match of group play. The only scorer of the game was Michael Ballack, who scored in the 49th minute with a powerful long-distance free-kick, later chosen German Goal of the Year. Somewhat surprisingly at this stage, the team then defeated Portugal who won their group comfortably 3-2 in the quarterfinal.
Germany went into their semi-final clash against Turkey as overwhelming favorites. However, the team put up a nervous and shaky performance, getting behind by an Uğur Boral goal in the 22nd minute. Bastian Schweinsteiger equalised, and Miroslav Klose put Germany ahead only for Semih Şentürk to level the score in the last minutes of the match. Just as the game was heading for extra time, Philipp Lahm stole in at the near post to score in the final minute, sending Germany into the final against Spain, the strongest team of the tournament so far.
After an opening 15 minutes in which Germany had the upper hand and nearly scored, Spain slowly came back into the game and then took the lead when Fernando Torres capitalised on a mistake made by the German defence. Although a Spainish defender appeared to handle the ball inside the box in the second half, Spain had the better of play for the remainder of the match and Germany finished runners-up.
Recent history was marked by Löw's attempts to rejuvenate the squad, bring in new players such as René Adler or Serdar Tasci in order to spark internal competition, which has led to some disharmony in the squad. For the qualification for World Cup 2010, Germany were placed in a group with Azerbaijan (led by former Germany coach Berti Vogts), Finland, Liechtenstein, Russia and Wales.
2010 FIFA World Cup qualification
In their penultimate match on 10 October 2009, Germany secured first place in their qualifying group for the 2010 World Cup by beating second placed Russia in Moscow 1–0.
Team v • d • e
Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
Germany 10 8 2 0 26 5 +21 26
Russia 10 7 1 2 19 6 +13 22
Finland 10 5 3 2 14 14 0 18
Wales 10 4 0 6 9 12 −3 12
Azerbaijan 10 1 2 7 4 14 −10 5
Liechtenstein 10 0 2 8 2 23 −21 2
Azerbaijan – 1 – 2 0 – 2 0 – 0 1 – 1 0 – 1
Finland 1 – 0 – 3 – 3 2 – 1 0 – 3 2 – 1
Germany 4 – 0 1 – 1 – 4 – 0 2 – 1 1 – 0
Liechtenstein 0 – 2 1 – 1 0 – 6 – 0 – 1 0 – 2
Russia 2 – 0 3 – 0 0 – 1 3 – 0 – 2 – 1
Wales 1 – 0 0 – 2 0 – 2 2 – 0 1 – 3 –
Euro 2012 qualifications
Germany will be competing in Group A in qualification for UEFA Euro 2012, together with Kazakhstan, Turkey, Austria, Belgium and Azerbaijan.
Team v • d • e
Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
Germany 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Turkey 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Austria 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Belgium 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kazakhstan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Azerbaijan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Austria — 8 Oct '10 25 Mar '11 3 Jun '11 7 Sep '10 6 Sep '11
Azerbaijan 7 Oct '11 — 2 Sep '11 7 Jun '11 6 Sep '11 12 Oct '10
Belgium 12 Oct '10 29 Mar '11 — 3 Sep '10 7 Oct '11 3 Jun '11
Germany 2 Sep '11 7 Sep '10 11 Oct '11 — 25 Mar '11 8 Oct '10
Kazakhstan 11 Oct '11 3 Jun '11 8 Oct '10 12 Oct '10 — 3 Sep '10
Turkey 29 Mar '11 11 Oct '11 7 Sep '10 7 Oct '11 2 Sep '11 —
Germany does not have a national stadium, and the national team's home matches are rotated among various stadia across the country. They have played home matches in 39 different cities so far - including venues which were German at the time of the match, such as Vienna, Austria, which staged three games between 1938 and 1942.
National team matches have most often (42 times) been held in the various stadiums of the city of Berlin. Berlin was also the venue of Germany's first home match in 1908 against England. Other common host cities include Hamburg (32 matches), Stuttgart (29) and Hanover (24). Another notable location is the city of Munich, which has hosted numerous notable matches throughout the history of German football including the 1974 World Cup Final which Germany won over Netherlands National Football Team.
The 2006 World Cup saw an unprecedented widespread public display of the national flag in the Federal Republic of Germany.
adidas AG is the longstanding kit provider to the national team, a sponsorship that began in 1954 and is contracted to continue until at least 2018. Nike, Inc. had been courting the team, and in August 2007 reportedly offered as much as €500 million to outfit the team for an eight-year period – a figure that is six times what adidas currently pays – but the federation decided to remain with Germany-based adidas.
The national team's home dress has always been a white jersey and black shorts. The colors are derived from the 19th century flag of the north German State of Prussia. The away jersey color has changed several times. Historically, green shirt with white shorts is the most often used alternative color combination, derived from the DFB colors (and the ones of a playing field), though it is also reported that the choice is in recognition of the fact that Ireland, whose home shirts are green, were supposedly the first nation to play Germany in a friendly game after World War II. This is false, as their first match after WWII was in fact against Switzerland. Other colours such as grey and black have also been used. A change, from black to red, came in November 2004 on the request of Jürgen Klinsmann, citing that teams in red are statistically more successful, and perceived as more intimidating.He hoped to use the red away shirt as first choice for the 2006 World Cup despite less than impressive results when playing in these colors (for example, the 1-4 loss in Italy), but Germany played every game at the 2006 World Cup in its home white colors. In 2010 the away colours then changed back to a black shirt and white shorts. The new away kit was worn by the team for the first time in a friendly against Argentina on 3 March 2010.
In Germany, the team is typically referred to as the "Nationalmannschaft" (national team), "DFB-Elf" (DFB eleven) or "Nationalelf" (national eleven), whereas in foreign media, they are regularly described as the "Mannschaft" (literally meaning "The Team").
Germany has won the World Cup three times, behind only Brazil (five titles) and Italy (four titles). It has finished as runners-up four times. In terms of semifinal appearances, Germany leads with 11, one more than Brazil's 10, which had participated in two more tournaments. In the last 14 World Cup tournaments, Germany has always reached at least the stage of the last eight teams. Germany has also qualified for every of the 16 World Cups it has entered — it did not enter the inaugural competition in Uruguay of 1930 for economic reasons, and could not qualify for or compete in the post-war 1950 World Cup as the DFB was reinstated as a FIFA member only two months after this tournament.
Germany has also won the European Championship three times (France and Spain are the only other multiple-time winners with two titles), and finished as runners-up three times as well. The Germans have qualified for every European Championship tournament except for the very first EC they entered in 1968. For that tournament, Germany was in the only group of three teams and thus only played four qualifying games. The deciding game was a scoreless draw in Albania which gave Yugoslavia the edge, having won in their neighbor country.
Germany played in the FIFA Confederations Cup twice, in 1999 (first round exit) and in 2005 (third place) as hosts.
See also East Germany and Saarland for the results of these separate German teams, and Austria for the team that was merged into the German team from 1938 to 1945.
World Cup record
Year Round Position GP W D* L GS GA Squad
1930 Withdrew - - - - - - - -
1934 Third place 3 4 3 0 1 11 8 Squad
1938 Round 1 10 2 0 1 1 3 5 Squad
1950 Banned - - - - - - - -
1954 Champions 1 6 5 0 1 25 14 Squad
1958 Fourth place 4 6 2 2 2 12 14 Squad
1962 Quarter-finals 7 4 2 1 1 4 2 Squad
1966 Runners-up 2 6 4 1 1 15 6 Squad
1970 Third place 3 6 5 0 1 17 10 Squad
1974 Champions 1 7 6 0 1 13 4 Squad
1978 Second Round 6 6 1 4 1 10 5 Squad
1982 Runners-up 2 7 3 2 2 12 10 Squad
1986 Runners-up 2 7 3 2 2 8 7 Squad
1990 Champions 1 7 5 2 0 15 5 Squad
1994 Quarter-finals 5 5 3 1 1 9 7 Squad
1998 Quarter-finals 7 5 3 1 1 8 6 Squad
2002 Runners-up 2 7 5 1 1 14 3 Squad
2006 Third place 3 7 5 1 1 14 6 Squad
2010 Qualified - - - - - - - -
Total 17/19 3 Titles 92 55 *19 18 190 112 -
*Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.
**Gold background colour indicates that the tournament was won. Red border colour indicates tournament was held on home soil.
Confederations Cup Record
Year Round GP W D* L GS GA Squad
1992 Did not qualify - - - - - - -
1995 Did not qualify - - - - - - -
1997 Did not enter - - - - - - -
1999 Round 1 3 1 0 2 2 6 Squad
2001 Did Not Qualify - - - - - - -
2003 Did not enter - - - - - - -
2005 Third Place 5 3 1 1 15 11 Squad
2009 Did not qualify - - - - - - -
Total 2/8 8 4 1 3 17 17 -
*Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.
**Gold background color indicates that the tournament was won. Red border color indicates tournament was held on home soil.
European Championship record
Year Round GP W D* L GS GA Squad
1960 Did not enter - - - - - - -
1964 Did not enter - - - - - - -
1968 Did not qualify - - - - - - -
1972 Champions 2 2 0 0 5 1 Squad
1976 Runners-up 2 1 1 0 6 4 Squad
1980 Champions 4 3 1 0 6 3 Squad
1984 Round 1 3 1 1 1 2 2 Squad
1988 Semi-finals 4 2 1 1 6 3 Squad
1992 Runners-up 5 2 1 2 7 8 Squad
1996 Champions 6 4 2 0 10 3 Squad
2000 Round 1 3 0 1 2 1 5 Squad
2004 Round 1 3 0 2 1 2 3 Squad
2008 Runners-up 6 4 0 2 10 7 Squad
2012 - - - - - - -
Total 10/13 38 19 10 9 55 39
Note All tournament wins except Euro 1996 were won as West Germany
Players called up for the friendly against Malta, 14 May 2010, including the preliminary 27-man squad for 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Caps and goals as of 3 March 2010.
# Name Date of birth Club Caps (goals) Debut
Hans-Jörg Butt1 28 May 1974 (age 35) Bayern Munich 3 (0) v. Liechtenstein, 7 June 2000
Tim Wiese1 17 December 1981 (age 28) Werder Bremen 2 (0) v. Belgium, 20 August 2008
Manuel Neuer 27 March 1986 (age 24) FC Schalke 04 2 (0) v. UAE, 2 June 2009
Tobias Sippel2 22 March 1988 (age 22) 1. FC Kaiserslautern 0 (0) N/A
Arne Friedrich 29 May 1979 (age 30) Hertha BSC 69 (0) v. Bulgaria, 21 August 2002
Philipp Lahm1 11 November 1983 (age 26) Bayern Munich 64 (3) v. Croatia, 18 February 2004
Per Mertesacker1 29 September 1984 (age 25) Werder Bremen 60 (1) v. Iran, 9 October 2004
Marcell Jansen 4 November 1985 (age 24) Hamburger SV 30 (2) v. Poland, 16 November 2004
Heiko Westermann 14 August 1983 (age 26) FC Schalke 04 17 (2) v. Austria, 6 February 2008
Serdar Tasci 24 April 1987 (age 23) VfB Stuttgart 10 (0) v. Belgium, 20 August 2008
Andreas Beck 13 March 1987 (age 23) 1899 Hoffenheim 6 (0) v. Norway, 11 February 2009
Jérôme Boateng 3 September 1988 (age 21) Hamburger SV 3 (0) v. Russia, 10 October 2009
Dennis Aogo 14 January 1987 (age 23) Hamburger SV 0 (0) N/A
Holger Badstuber1 13 March 1989 (age 21) Bayern Munich 0 (0) N/A
Mats Hummels2 16 December 1988 (age 21) Borussia Dortmund 0 (0) N/A
Michael Ballack1 (captain) 26 September 1976 (age 33) Chelsea 98 (42) v. Scotland, 28 April 1999
Bastian Schweinsteiger1 1 August 1984 (age 25) Bayern Munich 74 (19) v. Hungary, 6 June 2004
Piotr Trochowski 22 March 1984 (age 26) Hamburger SV 28 (2) v. Georgia, 7 October 2006
Mesut Özil1 15 October 1988 (age 21) Werder Bremen 8 (1) v. Norway, 11 February 2009
Marko Marin1 13 March 1989 (age 21) Werder Bremen 7 (1) v. Belarus, 27 May 2008
Sami Khedira 4 April 1987 (age 23) VfB Stuttgart 2 (0) v. South Africa, 5 September 2009
Toni Kroos 4 January 1990 (age 20) Bayer Leverkusen 1 (0) v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Christian Träsch 1 September 1987 (age 22) VfB Stuttgart 1 (0) v. UAE, 2 June 2009
Kevin Großkreutz2 19 July 1988 (age 21) Borussia Dortmund 0 (0) N/A
Stefan Reinartz2 1 January 1989 (age 21) Bayer Leverkusen 0 (0) N/A
Marco Reus2 31 May 1989 (age 20) Borussia Mönchengladbach 0 (0) N/A
Miroslav Klose1 9 June 1978 (age 31) Bayern Munich 94 (48) v. Albania, 24 March 2001
Lukas Podolski 4 June 1985 (age 24) 1. FC Köln 70 (37) v. Hungary, 6 June 2004
Mario Gómez1 10 July 1985 (age 24) Bayern Munich 32 (11) v. Switzerland, 7 February 2007
Cacau 27 March 1981 (age 29) VfB Stuttgart 5 (0) v. China, 29 May 2009
Stefan Kießling 25 January 1984 (age 26) Bayer Leverkusen 3 (0) v. Denmark, 28 March 2007
Thomas Müller1 13 September 1989 (age 20) Bayern Munich 1 (0) v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Player will not be available for friendly against Malta due to club fixtures.
Player called up for the match against Malta only.
The following players have also been called up to the Germany squad within last 12 months and are still available for selection.
Name Date of birth Club Caps (goals) Debut Most Recent Call up
René Adler 15 January 1985 (age 25) Bayer Leverkusen 9 (0) v. Russia, 11 October 2008 v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Marcel Schäfer 7 June 1984 (age 25) Wolfsburg 7 (0) v. England, 19 November 2008 v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Robert Huth 18 August 1984 (age 25) Stoke City 19 (2) v. Austria, 18 August 2004 Performance test, January 2010
Andreas Hinkel 26 March 1982 (age 28) Celtic 21 (0) v. Serbia & Montenegro, 30 April 2003 v. UAE, 2 June 2009
Thomas Hitzlsperger 5 April 1982 (age 28) Lazio 51 (6) v. Iran, 9 October 2004 v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Christian Gentner 14 August 1985 (age 24) Wolfsburg 4 (0) v. China, 29 May 2009 v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Aaron Hunt 4 September 1986 (age 23) Werder Bremen 1 (0) v. Côte d'Ivoire, 18 November 2009 v. Argentina, 3 March 2010
Simon Rolfes 21 January 1982 (age 28) Bayer Leverkusen 21 (1) v. Denmark, 28 March 2007 Performance test, January 2010
Tobias Weis 3 July 1985 (age 24) 1899 Hoffenheim 1 (0) v. UAE, 2 June 2009 v. UAE, 2 June 2009
Patrick Helmes 1 March 1984 (age 26) Bayer Leverkusen 12 (1) v. Denmark, 28 March 2007 Performance test, January 2010
Famous past players
Germany international footballers
Most capped players
Below is a list of the 20 players with the most caps for Germany as of 3 March 2010 (* denotes players still available for selection). Players who had played for the separate East German Team, and then were capped for the DFB team (Ulf Kirsten: 100 caps in total, 49 for East Germany, then 51 for Germany), do not appear in this list, though they are included in FIFA records.
# Player Germany career Caps Goals
1 Lothar Matthäus 1980–2000 150 23
2 Jürgen Klinsmann 1987–1998 108 47
3 Jürgen Kohler 1986–1998 105 2
4 Franz Beckenbauer 1965–1977 103 14
5 Thomas Häßler 1988–2000 101 11
6 Michael Ballack* 1999–present 98 42
7 Berti Vogts 1967–1978 96 1
8 Sepp Maier 1966–1979 95 0
= Karl-Heinz Rummenigge 1976–1986 95 45
10 Miroslav Klose* 2001–present 94 48
11 Rudi Völler 1982–1994 90 47
12 Andreas Brehme 1984–1994 86 8
= Oliver Kahn 1995–2006 86 0
14 Andreas Möller 1988–1999 85 29
15 Karlheinz Förster 1978–1986 81 2
= Wolfgang Overath 1963–1974 81 17
= Bernd Schneider 1999–2008 81 4
18 Torsten Frings* 2001–2009 79 10
19 Harald Schumacher 1979–1986 76 0
= Guido Buchwald 1984–1994 76 4
Below is a list of the top 10 goalscorers for Germany, as of 3 March 2010 (* denotes players still available for selection):
Note: former East Germany players are not included in this Wikipedia list, though they are included in FIFA records
# Player Goals Caps Avg/Game
1 Gerd Müller 68 62 1.09
2 Miroslav Klose* 48 94 0.51
3 Rudi Völler 47 90 0.52
= Jürgen Klinsmann 47 108 0.43
5 Karl-Heinz Rummenigge 45 95 0.47
6 Uwe Seeler 43 72 0.60
7 Michael Ballack* 42 98 0.43
8 Oliver Bierhoff 37 70 0.53
= Lukas Podolski* 37 70 0.53
10 Fritz Walter 33 61 0.54
Germany captains since Germany's first participation in a World Cup in 1934.
Note: the column "games" signifies overall games as captain, not overall caps. Captained games outside the player's main period are also included.
Player Period Games Notes
Fritz Szepan 1934–1939 30
Paul Janes 1939–1942 31
Fritz Walter 1951–1956 30 Honorary captain
Hans Schäfer 1957–1962 16
Helmut Rahn 1958–1959 8
Herbert Erhardt 1959–1962 18
Uwe Seeler 1962–1970 40 Honorary captain
Wolfgang Overath 1970–1971 14
Franz Beckenbauer 1971–1977 50 Honorary captain
Berti Vogts 1977-1978 20
Bernard Dietz 1978–1981 19
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge 1981–1986 51
Harald Schumacher 1986 14
Klaus Allofs 1986–1988 8
Lothar Matthäus 1988–1994 75 Honorary captain
Jürgen Klinsmann 1994-1998 36
Oliver Bierhoff 1998–2001 23
Oliver Kahn 2001–2004 49
Michael Ballack 2004–present 55 Record as of 3 March 2010.
Most World Cups played in: Lothar Matthäus - 5 (all-time record tied with Mexico's Antonio Carbajal)
Most World Cup match appearances: Lothar Matthäus - 25 (all-time record)
Most World Cup goals: Gerd Müller - 14 (second behind Brazil's Ronaldo with 15)
Most European Championship match appearances: Thomas Häßler and Jürgen Klinsmann - 13
Most European Championship goals: Jürgen Klinsmann - 5
Main article: Germany national football manager
Name Period Matches Wins Draws1 Losses Win % Honours
DFB committee 1908–1928 63 18 13 32 28.6
Otto Nerz 1928–1936 70 42 10 18 60 Third place at the 1934 World Cup
Sepp Herberger2 1936–1942
1950–1964 162 92 26 44 56.8 Winner of the 1954 World Cup, Fourth place at the 1958 World Cup
Helmut Schön 1964–1978 139 87 31 21 62.6 Runner-up of the 1966 World Cup, Third place at the 1970 World Cup, Winner of Euro 72, Winner of the 1974 World Cup, Runner-up of Euro 76
Jupp Derwall 1978–1984 67 44 12 11 65.7 Winner of Euro 80, Runner-up of the 1982 World Cup
Franz Beckenbauer 1984–1990 66 34 20 12 51.5 Runner-up of the 1986 World Cup, Winner of the 1990 World Cup
Berti Vogts 1990–1998 102 66 24 12 64.7 Runner-up of Euro 92, Winner of Euro 96
Erich Ribbeck 1998–2000 24 10 6 8 41.7
Rudi Völler 2000–2004 53 29 11 13 54.7 Runner-up of the 2002 World Cup
Jürgen Klinsmann 2004–2006 34 19 9 6 58.8 Third place at the 2005 Confederations Cup, Third place at the 2006 World Cup
Joachim Löw3 2006– 46 31 8 7 67.3 Runner-up of Euro 2008
Total3 826 473 169 184 57.4
Includes matches won or lost on penalty shootouts.
Record includes periods of pre-division Germany (1936–1942 — 65 matches: 40 wins, 12 draws, 13 losses) and West Germany (1950–1964 — 97 matches: 52 wins, 14 draws, 31 losses; no national team matches and no national coaches between 1942 and 1950).
Record as of 3 March 2010.