Germany fall to lowest FIFA World ranking in 18 years

Germany fall to lowest FIFA World ranking in 18 years

With little more than 100 days until Euro 2024 kicks-off in Germany, the hosts have fallen to their lowest FIFA ranking in more than 18 years.

After a disappointing Euro 2020, a group stage exit at the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups, and recent defeats to Turkey and Austria, Germany are in a period decline.

As recently as 2018, Germany were ranked first in the world before they were dumped out of the 2018 World Cup in the group stages, becoming only the fifth defending champions to be eliminated in the group stages of the World Cup.

In 2020, Germany lost 2–0 to England in the round of 16, their first round of 16 exit in a major tournament since the 1938 World Cup.

In their Nations League campaign, Germany finished third in their group of four, behind Italy and Hungary after managing just one win.

The poor form continued into the 2022 World Cup as Germany were knocked out in the group stages.

Defeat to Japan, a draw to Spain and an entertaining 4-2 win over Costa Rica meant Germany were knocked out on goal difference.

Based on results alone, it is unlikely that Germany would have qualified for Euro 2024.

By qualifying automatically as hosts, Germany played 11 friendlies in 2023, winning just 3 times, against Peru, France and the United States.

They have struggled defensively in that time, conceding 22 times and have kept just two clean sheets in the last 24 months.

However, it is not the first time in recent memory that Germany are heading into a host tournament as underdogs.

Entering the 2006 World Cup, Germany were ranked 22nd in the world after a group stage exit at Euro 2004.

Italy dismantled Germany 4–1 in a March 2006 exhibition game and the hosts looked destined for another early exit in their home World Cup.

However, Germany finished top of their group with three wins from three and sailed into the semi-finals after wins against Sweden and Argentina.

Once more, they were undone by Italy in extra time but defeated Portugal 3–1 in the third-place play-off.

Germany begin their preparations for Euro 2024 in March with two friendlies against France and Netherlands.

The hosts then open the tournament against Scotland in Munich.

If they are to stand any hope of causing a surprise and winning the tournament, Germany will need to stop leaking goals.

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