Spain v Germany: Shock loss puts pressure on Germans
Spain v Germany betting tips, predictions and odds
Former champions Spain and Germany made very contrasting starts to the World Cup 2022 as the two Group E heavyweights prepare to meet in the second round of matches.
This had been expected to decide top spot in the group but Germany’s shock defeat by Japan means they are now in danger of elimination, while Spain cruised to a 7-0 win against Costa Rica.
Sunday’s match at the Al Bayt Stadium kicks off at 7pm and is live on the BBC.
Germany underdogs after slow start
Germany exited at the group stage in Russia four years ago and could suffer the same fate after their poor start.
They took the lead with a 33rd-minute penalty from Ilkay Gundogan, who also hit the post on the hour mark, but Japan drew level with 15 minutes of normal time remaining when substitute Ritsu Doan fired in after Manuel Neuer parried a Takumi Minamino effort.
Fellow sub Takuma Asano then cracked past Neuer eight minutes later as the Germans became the latest victims of an upset, a day on from Argentina’s 2-1 loss to Saudi Arabia.
𝐎𝐇. 𝐌𝐘. 𝐖𝐎𝐑𝐃.
The touch 👌
The finish 🚀
Japan are BEATING Germany thanks to Takuma Asano 😱 pic.twitter.com/9emat3vyB2
— ITV Football (@itvfootball) November 23, 2022
Worries about their lack of firepower were quickly silenced as Spain recorded their biggest-ever World Cup win to underline their credentials as serious contenders in the World Cup outright betting.
The contest was over within 31 minutes as Dani Olmo, Marco Asensio and Ferran Torres, from the penalty spot, rewarded one-touch passing and movement that Costa Rica could not live with.
Torres grabbed his second before Gavi and substitutes Carlos Soler and Alvaro Morato completed the rout.
Whether such an attacking display can be repeated against stronger opposition is questionable though, especially in a game when a draw would be a good result for Spain, so under 2.5 goals at 23/20 is the first of our Spain v Germany betting tips.
No worries for Enrique
Spain have struggled on the World Cup stage since lifting the trophy in 2010 – exiting at the group stage in 2014 and being knocked out at the last 16 four years later.
But the nature of the victory against Costa Rica will raise expectations that Spain can go deep in the competition and challenge for the main prize again.
The lack of a world-class striker is the biggest concern but boss Luis Enrique is not worried.
“We don’t have one striker who scores many goals,” he said. “But we have lots of players who score goals and I have never been worried about the lack of goals. We are always the highest scorers in competitions.”
Germany boss Hansi Flick had overseen only one previous defeat in 16 matches since taking charge of the side in August 2021.
He faces his biggest test yet though and said: “Now we have to make up for it. We have to make sure when we play Spain on Sunday that we take advantage of our opportunities.
“Of course, now with this defeat and zero points, we are under pressure, there’s no question about that. We can only blame ourselves, so now we have to make sure we can come out of this.
“We need to be courageous and decisive. We need the aggression in the game that’s necessary at a World Cup.”
Germany were hammered 6-0 when the teams met in the Nations League two years ago though when they failed to muster a shot on target and had just 30 per cent possession.
Teenage kicks breaking records
Looking at the first goalscorer betting in the Spain v Germany odds, Gavi stands out at 14/1.
The teenager had been tipped to be one of the stars of the tournament and became the youngest World Cup goalscorer since Pele 64 years ago with his goal against Costa Rica.
Gavi had become Spain’s youngest goalscorer when he scored against the Czech Republic and before his 18th birthday in June. He is now Spain’s youngest scorer at a World Cup.
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All odds and markets are correct as of the date of publication