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Euro 2024: Germany nervous about Scotland encounter – Nagelsmann

Germany head coach says his side need to be ready for the challenge of the Scots in Group A opener

Germany football manager Julian Nagelsmann

Germany head coach Julian Nagelsmann admits his side will be nervous as they prepare to face Scotland in the Euro 2024 opener.

The hosts will seek to end an eight-year wait for a knockout win in a major tournament on home soil this month but know Scotland will not make it easy for them in the Group A opener in Munich on Friday night (8pm BST kick-off).

Speaking at the pre-match press conference Nagelsmann – who only took charge of the three-time European Champions nine months ago after Hansi Flick was sacked – said the camp were looking forward to tomorrow and  ‘I think we’re ready’

“We’ve used the days well to train well. The boys seem in good form,” he added. “We are a bit nervous but that’s an important point. We have to have a certain nervousness.”

He identified Steve Clarke’s side’s danger from set pieces and from out wide and said the Scots were under no pressure against Germany.

“Scotland are a very good team that have four or five important players in their group,” he said.

“They put in lots of crosses. They have made big progress in the way they play football. Their mentality is certainly extraordinary.

“We are under more pressure than the Scots. We want to win the opening game. I also demand that we believe in ourselves. We have good players and have shown mentality in recent games. We have everything we need and want to bring it onto the pitch.”

He urged the fans at his former stomping ground the Allianz Arena to get behind Die Mannschaft, adding: “I want us to do everything we can to have a great tournament. I want the country to push us forward as Germany. Please all be loud in the stadium tomorrow. I’m confident we’ll play a good game.”

Nagelsmann also lifted the lid on the process of getting Toni Kroos to end his international retirement after two years to finish his playing career with Germany this summer.

“Toni is important for us, you can give him the ball at any time. He is an important player for all of us, but especially for the young players,” he said.

“It took me a while to persuade him. He said that he would only be back if he felt that we could win something with the team. And then he said ‘Yes, let’s do it.’”

Kroos retired after Germany’s dismal Euro 2020 campaign ended in the Round of 16 against England, while they went on to go out in the group at the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

“I don’t want to talk about the past,” said Nagelsmann. “It’s about the present. We want to be more successful than we were last time.

“It’s important to start well tomorrow. There’s no point in talking about past tournaments.”

Picture of Alex Hoad

Alex Hoad

Alex has more than 15 years' experience in sports journalism and has reported on multiple Olympics, World Cups and European Championships in additional to Champions League, Europa League and domestic football.