Before the last and decisive group game of the national soccer team against Costa Rica, Thomas Müller warned of a parallel to the World Cup four years ago.
"Yes, of course, we actually had a similar situation with a win against South Korea. Now we just have to do it differently," said Müller in Al-Shamal. In Russia, the DFB-Elf was eliminated for the first time in a World Cup preliminary round with a 0-2 draw against South Korea. Reaching the eighth final of the World Cup is now a must for the 33-year-old in his fourth World Cup tournament.
"When world football looks at Germany against Costa Rica, I think we're the favorites from the outside. I think it's absolutely clear that we have to win. But of course we have respect," said Müller before the game on Thursday (8 p.m. ARD and MagentaTV) in Al Khour. The DFB-Elf has to beat the Central Americans to reach the knockout round.
"Have a lot of humility yourself"
"We have a lot of humility ourselves. If you look at the table, we have one point minus one goal difference. Accordingly, there is not much reason to be really euphoric," Müller referred to the situation of the DFB selection after the 1 2-2 against Japan and 1-1 against Spain in Group E. "What's been putting a smile on our faces since the day before yesterday is even having the chance to make it to the round of 16 and then being able to show the football world what's really in stuck with us," said Müller.
Müller didn't want to answer whether he or Niclas Füllkrug should act as a striker against Costa Rica or whether both should be called up together. "My role has always been the same, I try to lead the way," said Müller. But the line-up is up to national coach Hansi Flick. Torheld Füllkrug does not see himself as competing with Müller. "Stupid question," he said on the subject of whether he or Müller should storm against Costa Rica.