World Champions Germany are one of the front-runners for success once again, this time around in Russia. You could argue Joachim Low’s team are even stronger than they were in 2014, having won the Confederations Cup last summer with none of their senior players.
Four years on, and Germany still lack a reliable, conventional striker, with their goal hopes pinned on 22-year-old forward Timo Werner, but don’t read too much into that. The Germans recently went on an 18-month unbeaten run, keeping them top of the FIFA world rankings, however a recent blip in form featuring three draws to England, France and Spain followed by defeat to Brazil hasn’t been the ideal preparation for the World Cup.
It’s up to you on FIFA 18's World Cup mode to defend Germany’s world title. RealSport provide all there is to know on taking the reins with Die Mannschaft.
It's not surprising that Germany receive a 5 star rating on FIFA 18. This consists of 85 attack, 85 midfield and 85 defence scores.
Germany’s potential World Cup fixtures
Round of 16
Switzerland / Serbia / Costa Rica
Colombia / England / Belgium
Spain or Argentina
Brazil or France
It’s a kind group stage for Germany, and they should sail through to the knockouts without a hitch. The Round of 16 will be slightly more difficult, with all of Switzerland, Serbia and Costa Rica having the potential to be stubborn opponents.
The quarterfinals is when things get really serious. Germany could face Colombia, England or Belgium in the last eight, and although an upset could occur, you would still expect the Germans to come through.
A semifinal clash against Spain or Argentina is worthy of the final, and meeting Brazil or France in Moscow has the potential to be one of the great World Cup finals.
Germany’s default formation on FIFA 18 is a conventional 4-2-3-1 system. You can either stick with this or switch to a more advanced 4-3-3 attack, so perhaps familiarise yourself with both systems in order to use them against different opposition.
Manuel Neuer has to start in goal. There’s a strong Bayern Munich feel in the back four as Joshua Kimmich, Jerome Boateng and the robust Mats Hummels (92 standing tackle) line up alongside Koln’s Jonas Hector.
Sami Khedira joins deep conductor Toni Kroos (93 long passing) in central midfield as playmaker Mesut Ozil (91 vision) sets up in the number 10 role. Thomas Muller and Marco Reus set up in the wide positions, and Timo Werner leads the line on his own.
On the bench go for Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Niklas Sule, Emre Can, Ilkay Gundogan, Julian Draxler, Leroy Sane and Mario Gomez.
The key in this German team is to get the best out of Mesut Ozil. Yes, you also have Toni Kroos in defensive midfield, but Ozil (89 short passing) has the capacity to get in between the lines in the attacking midfield role and play in his teammates. To maximise the Arsenal man’s influence, you should get him to ‘stay forward’ for defensive support on the instructions tab, as well as to ‘free roam’ for his positioning freedom.
Timo Werner will need support in attack, and you will want Thomas Muller (87 finishing) to support the striker. Tell Muller to ‘cut inside’ for chance creation and to ‘get into the box for cross’.
As for Werner, you will need to utilise his pace (93 acceleration) so on his attacking runs, select ‘get in behind’.
As for general game play, with the weak opponents in the group stage you can afford to be more attacking so you can slide into a more attacking mentality on the D-pad or go for that more aggressive 4-3-3 attack formation.
Defend your crown
No side has successfully defended the World Cup since Brazil in 1962. Germany have the capacity to become just the second to retain their title this summer, with Die Mannschaft holding perhaps the strongest squad in the entire competition.
Of course, when you are at the top, you have a target on your back. A number of teams have improved considerably since the 2014 World Cup, most notably Brazil and France, and the face that Germany could meet either of those sides in the final is a tantalising prospect. A trip to the final is probably the minimum aim for Joachim Low’s men, and given the near perfect blend of youth and experience, you would be foolish to bet against them.
Germany squad player ratings
|Manuel Neuer||32||GK||Bayern Munich||91|
|Marc-Andre Ter Stegen||26||GK||Barcelona||87|
|Bernd Leno||26||GK||Bayer Leverkusen||84|
|Mats Hummels||29||CB||Bayern Munich||90|
|Jerome Boateng||29||CB||Bayern Munich||87|
|Joshua Kimmich||23||RB CM CB CDM||Bayern Munich||85|
|Niklas Sule||22||CB||Bayern Munich||84|
|Antonio Rudiger||25||CB RB||Chelsea||83|
|Benedikt Howedes||30||CB RB LB||Juventus||82|
|Jonathan Tah||22||CB||Bayer Leverkusen||81|
|Jonas Hector||27||LB CDM||Koln||81|
|Marvin Plattenhardt||26||LB||Hertha BSC||78|
|Benjamin Henrichs||21||RB LB||Bayer Leverkusen||75|
|Toni Kroos||28||CM CDM||Real Madrid||90|
|Mesut Ozil||29||CAM RW||Arsenal||88|
|Thomas Muller||28||RM CF ST||Bayern Munich||86|
|Marco Reus||28||LM ST CAM||Borussia Dortmund||85|
|Sami Khedira||31||CDM CM||Juventus||85|
|Ilkay Gundogan||27||CM CDM||Man City||84|
|Julian Draxler||24||LM CAM||PSG||84|
|Leon Goretzka||23||CM CAM CDM||Schalke||84|
|Leroy Sane||22||LM RM||Man City||83|
|Mario Gotze||83||CAM CF||Borussia Dortmund||83|
|Emre Can||24||CDM CM RB||Liverpool||82|
|Julian Brandt||22||LM RM||Bayer Leverkusen||81|
|Sebastian Rudy||28||CM CDM RB||Bayern Munich||81|
|Julian Weigl||22||CDM CM||Borussia Dortmund||80|
|Karim Bellarabi||27||RM||Bayer Leverkusen||80|
|Serge Gnabry||22||LM RM||Hoffenheim||80|
|Kerem Demirbay||24||CAM CM||Hoffenheim||80|
|Timo Werner||22||ST||RB Leipzig||85|
|Lars Stindl||29||CF CAM ST||‘Gladbach||82|
|Kevin Volland||25||ST RW LW||Bayer Leverkusen||79|