Germany are trendsetters

JOHANNESBURG - Germany has laid down the marker for the rest of the world to follow.

With the Confederations Cup in progress in Russia, the defending Fifa World Cup champions have left the global football audience perplexed with the way they are doing things.

The Confederations Cup is historically a dry run to check if all systems are ready for activations ahead of the each World Cup.

But instead of the world talking about Russia’s state of preparedness, it is the young German side that has left the entire world baffled.

Fielding a relatively young and inexperienced side shored up by a few senior players, Germany was supposed to be the whipping boys of the tournament.

But Joachim Louw’s side has turned the world on its head with some scintillating football, brushing aside star-studded opposition with contempt.

The Europeans giants will play Chile in tomorrow’s final which with new predictions, it is the young underdogs who now go into the final as odds favourites.

It is the way Germany has been dominant with this young squad that saw one football writer to write: “Germany has no B-Team. They have two A-Teams. It is like having a Ferrari and a Lamborghini parked in your garage.”

With almost none of the superstars that won the Fifa World Cup in Brazil in 2014 and any of the celebrities that massacred Brail 7-1 in this Confed Cup, Die Mannschaft (The Team) has shown the world that it is not the superstars that can only win things.

They have shown good shape, discipline and teamwork are only the true ingredients of a successful team.

They have been solid at the back, work as a unit in the midfield and convert 80 percent of their chances. The way they dismantled a full strength Mexico side had all pundits lost for words.

Some say, this German side will defend the Fifa World Cup next year while others say, it is only Germany that can field three to four strong national teams at the same time.

Others say, Germany’s football development needs to be a paradigm of how things are supposed to be done on the globe.

We have seen a number of teams in Africa dominating youth tournaments such as the Under-17 and Unde-20 but once those players are supposed to graduate into the senior national team, they disappear into thin air.

This has led many critics to say most African players are age cheaters to such an extent that by the time they are supposed to have matured into senior players will already have passed their sell-by date.

This argument is underlined by the fact that no African country has come close to winning the Fifa World Cup but most have dominated junior tournaments.

One would have thought that most of the teams competing at the ongoing Cosafa Cup that is currently taking place in Rustenburg, could have used it as a precursor to blood in new talent and broaden the countries’ talent. But winning at all costs is threatening to kill the bigger picture on the African continent.

The only way to have sustainable success is by ploughing big in development structures; making sure players are stopped from age cheating and are brought through proper structures.

Germany has shown the world the way to go about football development. There are no shortcuts in football.

Africa should take notes from this German side.

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