It’s one of the most hotly-contested derbies in international football, as Germany host Netherlands in their European Championship Qualification match in group C, kicking off on Friday night at 8:45pm local time in Berlin, Germany. This will be the side’s fourth competitive meeting in the last 12 months.
Home Team: Germany
Germany perhaps hit an all-time low in 2018, as not only did they crash out of the World Cup bottom of their group for the first time in their history, but they also were bottom in their UEFA Nations League group with Netherlands and France. Manager Joachim Low is still trusted by the German FA – after all, he won the World Cup in 2014 – as he aims to change the personnel of the German team. Many players have either retired, or deemed no longer part of the plans for the national team, as the majority of the squad is youthful.
So far, their qualification for the Euros next summer is right on track, with them winning three matches out of three. In their first match, they won against Netherlands courtesy of a last-minute Schulz goal in a 3-2 cracker, which really set them on their way to progress. Following that, they beat Belarus away 2-0, and then smashed Estonia in an 8-0 victory. Germany currently sit in 2nd, behind Northern Ireland, but have played a game less.[geot exclude_country="US" ][/geot]
Away Team: Netherlands
Netherlands have had a few troublesome years since reaching the World Cup semi-finals in 2014. They failed to qualify for the European Championships in 2016, and then the World Cup in 2018 – an unimaginable scenario for the country. Now, they appear to be a force again, with some key players being integral to their success. Firstly, the youngster duo of Ajax last season, Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong, look to be world-class players, and in addition to that, have the best defender in the world in Virgil van Dijk. They reached the UEFA Nations Final last year, only to lose out to hosts Portugal. Netherlands have a bit of work to do in order to qualify for the Euros next summer, as they have only collected three points from a possible six so far. Due to their involvement in the UEFA Nations League, they do have more matches to play than the rest of their group, and will need to avoid any more defeats in order to catch up with Germany and Northern Ireland. Failing that, a play-off will await them.
Head to Head
As mentioned earlier, Germany and Netherlands have faced each other in three competitive matches already in the last 12 months. Netherlands won the first of those clashes, winning 3-0 in an emphatic fashion, before the two sides drew 2-2 in the return. The draw then was enough for Netherlands to qualify, and they did it in spectacular style, scoring two goals in the last five minutes to tie the game.
Their most recent meeting was back in March this year, as it was Germany who had the last laugh with a last minute winner in Netherlands – a compelling match that finished 3-2 to the visitors. Germany last lost a home match to Netherlands back in 2002 in a friendly. As for a competitive match, Netherlands did win against Germany in Germany back in 1988 – a very famous semi-final win in the European Championships.
My Predictions and Betting Tips
Germany are favourites to win at 19/20, with Netherlands priced at 13/5. For the sides to share the spoils, that is priced at 11/4. I expect that this game will have less goals than their last meeting in March, and will be a cagier affair with more on the line. Netherlands will want to avoid defeat, whereas Germany will feel confident of the win. Therefore, I am going to predict a narrow home win here, a 1-0 score line at a generous 9/1.
As I mentioned, there may not be a lot of goals, so backing there to be less than 2.5 goals at 6/5 seems reasonable. For the goal scorer, I’d back Marco Reus to get the solo goal of the game, as he has bagged three in his last two, and is at 11/8 to score at any time. As it could be a tight and tense affair, you may want to back the first goal to come in the 2nd half, perhaps the minutes between 61 and 70, at an incredible 16/1.
Finally, for the tipsters, you can get a repeat of a 3-2 score line again, with the visitors getting their first competitive win in Germany for 31 years – priced at 33/1![geot exclude_country="US" ][/geot] [geot country="US,CA" ]
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