Saturday at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin
Everything you need to know about the international match between Germany and Turkey
On Saturday night, the German football team will face Turkey at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin – kick-off will be at 8:45 pm. We clarify the most important questions about the test match, look at the opponents and the explosive sporting history of both teams.
The test match against Turkey is not about points, but the game is still important for DFB coach Julian Nagelsmann. The new national coach has just a few more games before naming a competitive team for the 2024 European Championship in his own country. After three disappointing tournaments, players and fans are yearning for a sense of success.
Nagelsmann wants to do many things differently than his predecessors Joachim Löw and Hansi Flick. That is why he will probably rely on new forces against Turkey again. With former Union players Robert Andrich and Grischa Prömel, Bremen striker Marvin Duksch and substitute goalkeepers Oliver Baumann and Janis Blaswich, there are five players in the squad who have never played for the senior team.
The first two games under Nagelsmann showed a positive trend. After falling behind, they celebrated an easy 3-1 victory over the USA. In the second game of the trip to the USA there was a fair 2-2 draw against Mexico, although in this game the coordination problems in defense became visible again.
Under Italian coach Vincenzo Montella, Turkey qualified for next summer’s European Championship with victories over Latvia and Croatia. A German did the preparatory work for this: Stefan Kuntz was Turkey coach until the end of September and achieved an almost perfect result with three wins and a draw in four qualifying games. Even so, he fell out with the association and parts of the team. Shortly before he was fired, he said: “Players have to get to the level of giving 100 percent. If they don’t give 100 percent, it hurts me.”
Bundesliga fans know what level many players can reach at best: with Kaan Ayhan, Hakan Çalhanoğlu and Salih Özcan, three players who were born in Germany and trained as football players here could be used.
When Hertha played Galatasaray in the UEFA Cup in 2008, a remarkable 62,612 spectators attended the Olympic Stadium, the Turkish national team’s fans being “two thirds of them”, as Hertha coach Dieter Hoeneß calculated at the time.
On Saturday, 10,000 more spectators are expected than 15 years ago, and the distribution between German and Turkish fans is expected to be repeated. Julian Nagelsmann’s team can expect a raucous concert of whistles every time they touch the ball. This is what the passionate fans of the Turkish national team are known for.
In October 2010, the German team faced Turkey once at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin, at the time the main game in Group A in qualifying for the European Championship. Every time he touched the ball, Mesut Özil, then 21, was whistled mercilessly by thousands of Turkish and Turkish-born fans, and insulting chants at him could also be heard. Many Turkish fans resented his decision to play for the German national team rather than his parents’ native Turkey.
Miroslav Klose made it 1-0 in the 42nd minute and Mesut Özil himself made it 2-0 midway through the second half, against Turkish goalkeeper Volkan Demirel. Özil’s celebration was extremely restrained and when the stadium announcer announced the score it was again accompanied by a raucous concert of whistling. Miroslav Klose finally made it 3-0 in front of 74,244 spectators.
Overall, the balance speaks clearly for the DFB team. In 21 games, Germany beat Turkey 14 times, with four draws and three defeats. The last meeting was on October 7, 2020. In Cologne, the test match at that time was 3-3. Germany’s top scorers were Draxler, Neuhaus and Waldschmidt, while Tufan, Karaca and Karaman scored for Turkey.
Visit to the stadium
Spectators should arrive at the Olympic Stadium early and use public transport if possible, police recommend. “The big challenge is the large number of events spread throughout the day,” says police spokeswoman Dierschke.
There may be traffic restrictions throughout the city. A total of more than 3,000 officers from the Berlin police and federal police will be on duty on Saturday, who will have to guarantee not only the international game, but also the demonstrations. Due to the dynamic situation, it is not possible to quantify exactly how many emergency services are specifically responsible for the international game, explains Dierschke. But police expect a peaceful football festival.
Broadcast: rbb24 Inradio, November 18, 2023, 8:15 am