Julian Nagelsmann: Let's see how Lamine Yamal reacts when things get tough

Julian Nagelsmann has carefully analyzed the opponent team, aware that the right-wing from Barcelona is one of the main threats against his team.

by Sead Dedovic
Julian Nagelsmann: Let's see how Lamine Yamal reacts when things get tough
© Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images Sport

Germany head coach Julian Nagelsmann is cautious ahead of one of the most important matches of his career. In the EURO quarterfinals in a few hours, Spain and Germany, two quality teams and favorites for winning the tournament, will meet. 

Spain has impressed football fans greatly since the beginning of the tournament. There are many quality players on Spain's roster, but particular attention is drawn to the young talent Lamine Yamal, who at just 16 years old is one of the stars of this year's EURO edition. 

Julian Nagelsmann has carefully analyzed the opponent team, aware that the right-wing from Barcelona is one of the main threats against his team. Nevertheless, the young coach, with vast experience, stresses that the pressure factor will be crucial in this match. Nagelsmann places greater emphasis on his team's attackers rather than on the opponents'. Jamal Musiala is a player that Julian did not forget to mention.

"Let's see how he reacts when things get tough. You can't defend him completely. You have to be prepared for different things. My focus is less on [Lamine] Yamal, more on Jamal [Musiala]. We can do something in attack ourselves."- Julian Nagelsman said, as quoted by Eurosport.

Lamine Yamal
Lamine Yamal© Dan Mullan/Getty Images Sport

Germany captain Ilkay Gundogan is aware of how crucial the crowd will be in this match. The Barcelona midfielder believes that the Spaniards could potentially face difficulties playing in such an atmosphere where the Germans will have the majority support. It seems that the Germans underestimate themselves in some statements, considering they might have an advantage in other aspects.

"We want to ignite this atmosphere with the style and manner in which we play. That can push us - and perhaps make the Spaniards a bit less secure," he continued.

Luis de la Fuente reacts

Spanish manager Luis de la Fuente praised Germany, recognizing their esteemed status in world football. De la Fuente revealed his team's strategy to take the initiative from the start, aiming to diminish Germany's strengths while also probing for weaknesses. He suggested that this match could have easily been an EURO final, stressing its potential importance in settling various outcomes.

Luis de la Fuente humorously mentioned considering unconventional tactics involving Toni Kroos, demonstrating a light-hearted approach to the challenge.

The Spanish manager emphasized their awareness of Kroos' playing style and outlined their strategy to prevent him from receiving the ball and limit his passing options during the match.

Nagelsmann described his team's defensive strategies and emphasized their focus on maintaining possession of the ball.

He stated that their defensive approach includes various formations designed to secure the ball, as possession provides a more comfortable playing environment.

Regarding Spain, Nagelsmann pointed out their aggressive pressing tactics aimed at quickly transitioning from defense to offense and winning the ball high up the pitch. He highlighted Spain's evolution beyond traditional tiki-taka, emphasizing their effectiveness in pressing and transitioning play.

Spain and evolution

Spain has changed its tactics a lot since 2012, when they last won the EURO. The generation of Spain at that time won two EUROs in a row, as well as the World Cup in 2010. The generation in which Xavi, Iniesta, Ramos, Busquets, Pique, Torres, Villa, and others played was a generation that will be talked about for years to come.

Many consider that generation of Spain one of the best in the history of football. Although this selection had problems after EURO 2012, it seems as if they are now getting back on track. The team has a lot of quality young players but also experienced ones who can make a difference on the pitch.

The Spaniards were especially impressive on this EURO and they showed they can be a danger for everyone. The Germans believe that they can make a success and stop Spain with the help of the crowd and a great team, of course.

Germany has not been particularly impressive when they met the Spaniards the last six times. A particularly heavy defeat was the one in the League of Nations 2020 when the Germans were defeated by Spain 6-0. The German coach pointed out that he was not part of those matches, stressing that he has no intention of looking at the previous duels of these two teams. In addition, the German expert believes that many others were not part of the team then and that this has no importance for today's match.

"I was not part of these games. I will never say in the changing room this is revenge for a game in the Nations League," Nagelsmann said.

"I wasn't there, and neither were some of the players. It is irrelevant for tomorrow."

Julian Nagelsmann Barcelona