Can Ger­many’s Loew suc­ceed where Hitler failed?

Mid Day - - SPORT - KASHINATH BHAT­TACHAR­JEE sports@mid-day.com

MOSCOW: An­other June, 77 years af­ter. Ger­many will start their cam­paign in Rus­sia to be the world­beater again!

In 1941 on June 22, Adolf Hitler and his Nazi-Ger­many started its cam­paign to in­vade Soviet Union. Ger­man forces ad­vanced around 1000 miles into the Soviet ter­ri­tory, yet had to come back when the USSR, led by Joseph Stalin, fought back gal­lantly to save the world from Hitler as pop­u­larly claimed by Rus­sians dur­ing the World War II.

On June 17, in Moscow’s Luzh­niki, ear­lier named as Lenin Sta­dium, Ger­many will play their first match against Mex­ico in their bid to em­u­late Italy (1934 and 1938) and Brazil (1958 and 1962) as back to back world cham­pi­ons.

Can the land of Red Army stop the Ger­mans from con­quer­ing the world? The World Cup win­ning Ger­man coach Joachim Loew can also do what Vit­to­rio Pozzo did. The late Ital­ian man­ager re­mains the only per­son to win two World Cups at a stretch. How­ever, when some so­called Ger­man sup­port­ers chanted ‘Sieg Hail’ in Prague in a World Cup qual­i­fier against Czech Repub­lic, last Septem­ber, Loew had no hes­i­ta­tion to de­clare, “They bring shame to our coun­try. We don’t want them. We are not their na­tional team and they are not our fans,” were strong words from the Ger­man coach against those Nazi-sup­port­ers.

A Ger­man coach ex­press­ing his de­sire for ‘se­vere sanc­tion against these trou­ble­mak­ers’ should have won more Soviet hearts be­fore the de­fend­ing champs start their cam­paign against Mex­ico.

Joachim Loew

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