2014 FIFA World Cup winners Germany are set to take on Mexico in the second semi-final of the Confederations Cup 2017 later on Thursday at the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi. Mexico will be looking to make it to the finals and win their second title while Germany are still looking for their first title after they finished third in 2005.
The winner of this match will take on Chile in the finals of the Confederations Cup 2017 on Sunday at the Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg. Claudio Bravo was the star for Chile in the semi-final against Portugal as the Manchester City man saved three penalties to take them to the finals.
Germany topped their group, defeating Cameroon and Australia, but they had to settle for a draw against Chile. Despite the fact that the squad named was a very youthful side, Joachim Low's players have stepped up and delivered at the Confederations Cup 2017. The German coach left out a number of big players for this tournament and Low said he was really happy to reach the semi-finals.
"I'm really happy to be in the semi-final with this side. Our main aim is always to be one of the last four teams in any competition. And you couldn't necessarily expect that from this team," BBC quoted Low as saying. "It's nice that the team is bonding, because the players are spending time with each other off the pitch too. They're incredibly happy to be here. Not a single player is seeking to be in the spotlight - instead they all want to succeed as a team."
As for Mexico, just like Germany, they finished the Group Stage with seven points but ended up second due to goal difference and they have performed pretty decently so far. They are the only team in the competition who have already won the Confederations Cup. While Germany will be expected to get the win today, Mexico could cause an upset as the German defence has not been as good as they generally are.
While their defence has struggled, a number of young Germans have really impressed in this tournament. Mexican coach Juan Carlos Osorio said that the fact that the Germans are young and inexperienced will not give his team an edge in the semi-finals today.
"You have mentioned that Germany is a very young squad; they have only one player who is 20, Benjamin Henrichs, who plays with Javier Hernandez at Bayer Leverkusen. There are two who are 21, Niklas Sule and Julian Brandt," Goal.com quoted Osorio as saying.
"Being young and having experience are two different things. For example, you can go to university when you are 30 years old and become a heart surgeon and have no experience at all."
"But you can study when you are 21 and then work in an emergency room in a huge city and have surgeries 10 times a weekend. When you are 22 or 23, you will have much more experience in practice than the heart surgeon who is 30 years old."
It won't be easy to predict who Low will decide to play this match as he has rotated his squad in all the matches so far. But Timo Werner will hope to continue after his brace against Cameroon. Shkodran Mustafi could also get back into the teams after he was left out of their previous match.
While Germany do not have a lot of injuries and suspensions to worry about, Mexico do. They will be without Captain Andres Guardado, who is suspended, while Diego Reyes is a doubt and Carlos Salcedo is ruled out due to an injury. Hector Moreno is also a slight doubt while Javier Hernandez trained separately.
Where to watch
The Confederations Cup 2017 semi-final between Germany and Mexico is set to start at 7:00pm local time, 11:30pm IST and 2:00pm EST.
TV and live streaming information
India: TV: Sony Six/HD, Ten 1. Live streaming: Sony Liv.
Germany: TV: ARD Das Erste, SRF zwei, ORF 1. Live streaming: ORF TV Live Streaming.
Mexico: TV: TDN, SKY Planeta Fútbol, UnivisionTDN, Sky HD.
Russia: TV: Channel One Russia.
USA: TV: STV Scotland, UTV, ITV 1 UK.