Germany shocked the world this week by netting an astonishing seven goals past host nation Brazil in the first semi-final of the tournament. What is even more surprising, though, is that they did it with an average squad age of just under 25 years old.
On a night that was expected to be the closest of contests between the two countries, Germany's plethora of young talent ran riot over an unorganized and naive Brazil. With players such as Thomas Mueller, Toni Kroos and Andre Schurlle (all under the age of 25) starring in the rout its looking pretty likely that the rest of world may have to get used to this German domination for some time to come.
After the embarrassment of going out in the group stages at Euro 2004, the German FA took steps into improving their home grown talent. The then coach former legend Jurgen Klinsman looked to improve fitness facilities at German clubs and pushed for local players to be given more playing time.
This has helped to adopt the clinical style of play that was seen ripping through Brazil in Belo Horizonte yesterday and associated with top German teams Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund. The total revamp of Bundesliga academies has helped to mould the current Deutschland stars at Brazil and turn them into a force to be reckoned with.
There is also no signs of this transformation failing the Germans as it is still continuing to bring in fresh talent off the conveyor belt and gives them the potential to improve even more as a team.
The already overflowing wealth of footballing talent in the German national team is astonishing and thanks to the implemented changes in 2004 many young prospects are still braking through. Here we will look at 5 of these players who are set to take the next World Cup by storm.
Already a household name at the age 20, Julian Draxler burst onto the scene in 2011 making his debut for Schalke against Hamburger SV and is now a regular for them on the wing.
Draxler's power and pace has made him a nightmare for Bundesliga defences, contributing with assists and an eye for the odd goal its no surprise that he has been linked to the likes of Bayern Munich and Arsenal.
The young winger's impressive domestic performances earned him a call up to the World Cup in Brazil where he has been restricted to one 14 minute stint off the bench. Although Julian has had little time to impress this summer he is sure to push on in seasons to come and will most definitely be a starter in Russia 2018.
The young forward has had a brilliant debut season for Stuttgart scoring four goals and creating five more all at the mere age of 18.
These performances have brought about comparisons between Werner and past Stuttgart star Mario Gomez and its easy to see why. With his acceleration, composure and clinical finishing its safe to say we'll be hearing Werner's name a lot more next season and a senior international call-up would be no surprise.
Another blossoming talent that had earned himself a place in Germany's world cup squad, Ginter has had an amazing season at the heart of Freiburg's defense. So much so that a host of clubs have been scrapping over the defenders signature, with Borussia Dortmund, Arsenal and Manchester United all being linked since the start of the summer.
The centre-back is well known for his sheer physicality and near perfect positioning making him an ideal replacement for an already ageing Mertesacker in the German back line.
At 21 years old, Volland is considered a veteran when it comes to German youth products but this has no effect on his potential. Currently playing his trade at Hoffenhiem the right forward has had a satisfying season at the Rhein-Neckar Arena scoring 11 times and grabbing four assists.
Volland a predominately left-footed player has key eye for goal and is more than capable of scoring from outside the box. Although narrowly missing out on a place in the world cup squad Volland could be the missing piece in the German attack when Klose finally hangs his international boots up.
One of the many midfield maestros to come out of the Bundesliga in the last couple of years, Meyer has all the qualities to be the star of the German team in 2018.
At his best in an attacking midfield position the 18-year-old dribbling, pinpoint passing, and off the ball runs have cemented him a place in the Schalke starting eleven and a big move may be on the cards very soon for the youngster.
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