Germany will not be among the tournament favourites if they qualify for next year’s Euro 2020, coach Joachim Loew said on Friday ahead of their final two qualifiers.
The Germans, who take on Belarus on Saturday before facing Northern Ireland on Tuesday, are level with leaders Netherlands on 15 points. Northern Ireland are third on 12. The top two earn automatic qualification and Germany could qualify as early as Saturday.
“We don’t belong to the tournament favourites,” Loew told reporters. “France, England have been playing with the same players for years. There are the Dutch, Spain.”
“Us, with our young team, we are not among the favourites because we are still in the process of change.”
The Germans suffered a shock group-stage exit at last year’s World Cup and were relegated in the inaugural Nations League, promoting a major overhaul of the team.
“Maybe in two or four years when the players are at their peak. I mean a lot is possible with this team and we are working on that because it does have a lot of quality.”
Loew has had to struggle with a lot of absences in recent months and his young team has rarely played with the same starting lineup, delaying, as he said, its development.