World champions Germany qualified for the WC 2018 in emphatic style winning all their 10 games in their Group. But a tremendous run of 22 unbeaten games was interrupted by a 0-1 loss to Brazil in an international friendly on March 27. Post their qualification to Russia 2018, the Germans' progress in the run up to the premier games has been below par.
A spell of 5 winless internationals was salvaged by a face-saving 2-1 win over Saudi Arabia in their final outing before they headed for Russia.
Germany v Mexico Predictions
Odds correct as of 14/06/2018.
Die Mannschaft's Sunday rivals, Mexico, have fared comparatively better in their warm-up games winning three of the last six friendlies albeit ending on a losing note to Denmark 0-2.
Hector Herrera takes charge for Mexico
The Mexicans will be skippered by mid-fielder Hector Herrera who had a fantastic season with Porto. Carlos Salcedo of Eintracht Frankfurt, FC Porto center-back Diego Reyes, Real Sociedad's Hector Moreno and Miguel Layun should mostly start off as defenders for the Central Americans on Sunday.
The Mexicans will depend heavily on Javier Hernandez “Chicharito” who will be the lone striker with Carlos Vela, Herrera and Marco Fabian playing behind him.
Guillermo Ochoa of Belgian club Standard Liege is the team's first choice goal-keeper.
Germany reliant on Muller Gomez
German coach still reposes faith on his two ageing strikers, Thomas Muller and Mario Gomez. But he has two strong standbys in case he is looking for replacements upfront – Bayern’s Sandro Wagner and RB Leipzig’s Timo Werner, the latter tipped to be one of the top scorers in Russia.
Low will probably go for a formation that has Werner as the striker with the likes of Muller, Mesut Ozil and Marco Reus ranged behind him. Real Madrid star Toni Kroos and Sammy Khedira will be the link between the mid-field and defense.
The back-line will consist of the very dynamic Joshua Kimmich who can show great attacking enterprise along the right-flank, too, plus Bayern Munich stalwarts Jerome Boateng Matt Hummels and FC Koln's Jonas Hector.
Low would be keen to give Manuel Neuer a start between the posts, but having come from a six-month injury hiatus, the iconic goal-keeper may not be in the peak of his confidence. Marc-Andreter Stegen would be a better choice under the circumstances, especially in an opening game which the Germans would be looking to win.
Leroy Sane a Surprise absentee
A surprising omission on Low's part has been that of Leroy Sane. The 22-year left winger's dazzling play down the left flank was one of the prime factors behind Manchester City's phenomenal success in the English Premier League this season.
Unfortunately, Sane hasn't been able to re-produce the same kind of form at the international level where his 12 outings haven't fetched him a single goal (compare this to the 14 he got for City from his 49 games and nearly a dozen assists to boot).
Bayer Leverkusen's Bayer Leverkusen is in for Sane complementing a strong bench that has Antonio Rudiger (Chelsea defender), Julian Draxler (PSG Winger), IlkayGundogan (Manchester City) and Kevin Trapp (PSG goalkeeper).
Germany v Mexico Verdict
The Germans go in to June 17th clash with a clear advantage over Mexico, having lost in just one of their 15 appearances with the Central American nation and winning in as many as six.
The other two teams in Group F are the not-very-formidable Sweden and South Korea, thus making it a easy cluster for the Die Mannschaft to move on to the knock-out round.