Germany’s defeat at the hands of Didier Deschamps’ France side was the first time the national outfit had lost their opening game of the European Championship.
Die Mannschaft succumbed to a 1-0 loss courtesy of an own goal from Borussia Dortmund star Mats Hummels who failed to defend a low cross from Frenchman Lucas Hernandez.
Speaking to RTE post-match, as quoted in a tweet by Bundesliga expert Ronan Murphy, former Liverpool midfielder Didi Hamann took aim at Joachim Low’s substitution selection.
Hamann to RTE: "We had five subs and none of them made any impact."
— Ronan Murphy (@swearimnotpaul) June 15, 2021
While the Netherlands are on record as having won the international tournament despite losing their opening clash in 1988, the result will hardly have enhanced the national side’s confidence going into the remaining group stage fixtures.
Sitting in a tough group alongside Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal, who secured a remarkable late victory against a plucky Hungary, the pressure will already be mounting on Germany to make a statement of intent this coming Saturday.
Realistically speaking, if Low’s men fail to find a victory against Fernando Santos’ men, their chances of making the knockout stages will begin to look somewhat slim.
There’s more than enough talent in the squad to help turn their fortunes around, though there’s no denying the critical nature of the weekend tie.