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Germany 1-2 North Macedonia: 5 Talking points as Germans suffer a shocking defeat | FIFA World Cup Qualifiers 2022

Timo Werner looks dejected
Timo Werner looks dejected
ANALYST
Modified 01 Apr 2021
Top 5 / Top 10

Germany suffered a shocking defeat to North Macedonia. Joachim Low's side lost the game 2-1 and now sit in third position behind Armenia and North Macedonia in the FIFA World Cup qualifying group.

Despite Germany having most of the possession, it was Goran Pandev who opened the scoring on the night as he tapped one in after some sloppy defending from the hosts right before half-time. Ilkay Gundogan equalized for his side from the penalty spot close to the hour mark.

Later on Timo Werner passed up a beautiful opportunity to take the lead and was made to pay for it as North Macedonia scored one in the dying minutes of the game. Eljif Elmas tucked in a cut-back from Arijan Ademi to grab all three points against the Germans.

On that note, let's take a look at the talking points from the game:

#5. Germany risk losing out on a World Cup spot

North Macedonia players celebrate after beating Germany
North Macedonia players celebrate after beating Germany

Germany are currently third in the points table with 6 points after 3 games. Armenia lead the pack with 9 points out of 9. Behind them are North Macedonia, who have the same number of points as Germany, but are ahead of them due to a better goal difference.

As things stand, Joachim Low's side will not make it to the FIFA World Cup in 2022. They will have to be pretty consistent from here on if they want to make it to the top.

#4. Germany need to fix their leaky defense

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Emre Can is not a natural centre-back
Emre Can is not a natural centre-back

Low started with a three-man defense against North Macedonia last night which consisted of Matthias Ginter, Antonio Rudiger and Emre Can. The three-man system works fine when you have wing-backs who allow you to change the formation from 3-5-2 to 5-3-2 as and when needed. However, Leroy Sane and Robin Gosens are not exactly wing-backs and that leaves the Germans exposed defensively.

It was the same problem last night as both Gosens and Sane looked threatening while bombing forward but had little defensive awareness or positioning sense without the ball.

The duo failed to track back and help out their defense. This allowed the visitors to run at gaping holes down the channels. Moreover, Emre Can struggled for the entirety of the game and it clearly showed that he is not a natural centre-back. Die Mannshaft are seriously missing Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels right now.

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Published 01 Apr 2021, 11:57 IST
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