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“It feels like we’re getting better and better.” – İlkay Gündoğan reflects on Germany’s performance against Hungary

“It feels like we’re getting better and better.” – İlkay Gündoğan reflects on Germany’s performance against Hungary
“It feels like we’re getting better and better.” – İlkay Gündoğan reflects on Germany’s performance against Hungary

A 2-0 victory over Hungary on matchday two of Germany’s Euro 2024 campaign ensured that the tournament hosts maintained their perfect start to the competition, simultaneously securing their spot in the knockout stages.

With goals from Jamal Musiala and İlkay Gündoğan, Julian Nagelsmann’s side were able to overcome the pre-tournament dark horses. However, Germany did not have it all their own way.

Prior to their clash, Manuel Neuer had stated that Germany would need to be at the top of their game in order to topple Hungary due to their “aggressive” and “unpleasant” nature. Nevertheless, instead of this, Hungary proved to be far more dangerous in the final third than in the tackle.

This saw Germany’s backline occasionally appear rather vulnerable, an issue that Nagelsmann has yet to expel from their performances. Regardless, the hosts were able to keep a much-needed clean sheet in a display that once again proved they have the quality to win Euro 2024.

Speaking to Magenta TV after the game, national team captain İlkay Gündoğan commented on Germany’s display, hinting towards the positives of keeping Hungary at bay:

“It feels like we’re getting better and better. But while things are getting better, you always have to overcome difficulties, and this game today showed that. That’s just how a tournament is: you have to survive dangerous situations, and then you have to strike when the chance arises. We definitely played it down in the second half.”

As well as this, the Barcelona midfielder spoke about his own performance against Marco Rossi’s side: “With regard to my own performance, I always wanted to remain patient and do my job as well as I could without taking myself too seriously. But the more often you play together, the better the feeling for the person next to you becomes. Hopefully, it continues like this.”

On Sunday, Germany will face Switzerland in Frankfurt in their final group game, where they will look to claim top spot in Group A.

GGFN | Will Shopland