Toni Kroos played a full 90 minutes against Saudi Arabia at the BayArena, Bayer Leverkusen’s home ground in North-Rhine Westphalia. There’s not a whole lot to takeaway from this match other than it’s the last friendly Die Mannschaft will play before the start of the World Cup next week. Germany were almost lucky to leave the match with a 2-1 win. Saudi Arabia came close to tying after the Khedira foul, which led to Saudi Arabia’s only goal via penalty kick. And one of Germany’s goals was an own goal by the Saudi defense.
Kroos didn’t directly assist on either of the two German goals, but was quite good in conducting play. Germany had 21 shots, with only 8 being on target. The defending world champions have struggled with this win being their only one of these international friendlies. Kroos himself admitted that the Germans gave up much too many chances to the Saudis. Germany look just a bit off going into next week, but they tend to turn things around in bigger competitions much like Real Madrid. Thomas Müller needs to find another gear because he has struggled so far. Also put into consideration that Mesut Özil missed this match due to injury.
Jogi Löw went with the 4-2-3-1 in which Kroos was paired with ex-Madridista Sami Khedira. Kroos is clearly the engine behind the German attack and will absolutely crucial to their international campaign in the World Cup this summer. Arguably, he is now one of the best midfielders in the world after really coming into his own at the 2014 World Cup. He will be looked to replace the void that was left by Bastian Schwiensteiger. Timo Werner also impressed as striker and looks like he is more than ready to take the next step in becoming the next great German forward.
Kroos will be back in action with Germany against Mexico on June 17th, their first match of the 2018 World Cup.