If Hansi Flick was perturbed, he was doing a fairly good job of hiding it. As he watched his side toil in their last home fixture before the World Cup, he simply paced down the sideline, hands in pockets, as if taking a stroll in a park.
Is there a word for the intense, borderline-irrational calm that overcomes German teams in the buildup to major tournaments?
If so, it’s probably German. The irony, perhaps, was that Germany were beaten by the one thing they do not possess, the one thing they have arguably never won a major tournament without: a seasoned old-school No 9.
The veteran Adam Szalai is 34 years old, and could probably try to recreate his winning goal for 34 more without finding the net.Read more on theguardian.com