Kroos, Özil, Müller, and Neuer
Definitely keep an eye out for Toni Kroos controlling the midfield with intelligent passing that strings together each side of the field. He is the conductor of possession seeing as how Germany plays the ball across the field from one outside player to another (be it an outside mid or defender). During stints of possession in their opponent’s half, Kroos often likes to stand on the left side of the field, somewhat diagonal to the corner of the penalty box— similar to how Ronaldinho did toward the end of his career. From there he dictates the playing pace. In this situation, some teams fail to keep a man on him, allowing him to make intriguing additions to the swing of passing, which can often lead to strong scoring opportunities.
Helping Kroos in this midfield effort will be Mesut Özil (who tends to favor his left foot), applying skillful grace to each pass. Özil, in counterattacks, has an uncanny feel for the right pass at the right moment, which can be debilitating for opponents.
After bursting onto the scene in the 2010 World Cup, Müller has proven to be a unique goal-scorer and playmaker. Despite his lanky and skinny build, he has the ability to make the right pass for the moment, whether it be a simple touch to continue possession or a well-placed through-ball, and he always seems to serve it at just the right moment. This skill often goes unnoticed, but it is vital in Germany’s success in a ninety-minute game.
In goal is the ever-talented Manuel Neuer, applying not only his dominate goal-keeping skills—some say the best in the world— but also his eager array of talent as a sweeper. Often he comes off his line to clear out danger or add to the possession game by distributing the ball (sometimes in tight spaces, which makes television announcers flinch) from defender to defender.