New Zealand to face group favourites Germany at FIFA U-17 Men’s World Cup

New Zealand to face group favourites Germany at FIFA U-17 Men’s World Cup

New Zealand’s next opponents at the FIFA U-17 Men’s World Cup, Germany, are among the favourites to win the tournament. 

Germany are the current European champions in this age group, having won the 2023 UEFA European Under-17 Championship in June, beating holders France 5-4 in a penalty shoot-out in the final.

In their first pool game, Germany beat Mexico 3-1, while New Zealand lost 3-0 to Venezuela.

The opposition

Like New Zealand, Germany are playing at their 11th FIFA U-17 World Cup.

This equals the most appearances by a European nation, alongside Spain, who are also at the Indonesian tournament.

Germany’s best performance at a finals was at the first-ever edition of the tournament (then, the FIFA U-16 World Championship) when Germany FR finished as runners-up to Nigeria.

They have also reached the semi-finals on three occasions – finishing fourth in 1997 and third in 2007 and 2011.

Germany finished as top scorers at the 2007 and 2011 U-17 World Cups.

Their tally of 24 goals at the 2011 finals has only been bettered by one other nation, when Nigeria scored 26 two years later.

Two German players have won major individual awards at the finals; Marcel Witeczek won the Golden Boot in 1985 after scoring eight goals, including back-to-back hat-tricks in the knockout phase against China PR and Brazil – just two days apart.

In 2007, Toni Kroos was awarded the Golden Ball as the best player in the tournament.

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