Germany made it five wins out of five with a 4-1 victory over Azerbaijan in their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying match last night
Joachim Low’s side have been utterly dominant in Group C and have scored 20 goals with Azerbaijan’s goal last night being the first goal that they have conceded thus far in their qualifying campaign.
First-half goals by Andre Schurrle, Thomas Muller and Mario Gomez put Germany 3-1 up at the break after Azerbaijan midfielder Dimitrij Nazarov had netted a surprising early equaliser, which got the home support fired up.
Schurrle then added a late fourth goal to put the result beyond doubt. Germany were at near full-strength and had named a strong starting lineup, but Joachim Low admitted that there were still several negatives from the performance.
“ I am satisfied, but there was some negligence. All that glitters is not gold,” he said, according to Fox Sports. “ The game we delivered wasn’t up to our standards. It was a bit like a cup game against a team that plays a league below you.”
“ If you do not start with full commitment from the beginning, you make them (play like they are) a league higher. You could see we hadn’t been together for four months and things aren’t happening automatically, so ultimately we can be satisfied.”
Low usually focuses on where improvement is required from his team despite good performances so it is no surprise to see him criticise some aspects of their game despite the convincing victory last night.
Several players who spoke after the match were also in agreement that Germany were not at their best and there is definitely some truth to that, as Die Mannschaft did not look as fluid and in control as they have over the last few years.
The players were constantly misplacing passes and Azerbaijan created a number of opportunities which caused the Germans to sit up and take notice, and they never really looked completely comfortable until Schurrle’s third goal.
From then on, Low’s side shifted into cruise control but the manager was clearly unhappy with the nature of the goal they conceded which spoiled their perfect defensive record in the campaign thus far.