France and Germany have become familiar rivals recently, with the latter looking to avenge their UEFA EURO 2016 semi-final loss.
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France and Germany have become regular rivals over the last decade, and memories of 2016 in particular will be strong as the two countries reconvene at the Football Arena Munich.
• This Group F opener is a repeat of the UEFA EURO 2016 semi-final, won 2-0 by France two years after Germany had beaten them in the last eight of the FIFA World Cup.
• Both teams have frequently featured in the knockout stages of recent editions of the UEFA European Championship, although with holders Portugal – who beat France in the 2016 final – also in Group F, the importance of a solid start will not be lost on either side.
• As defending world champions, France can become the first country to hold world and European titles at the same time twice, having ended Germany's hopes of doing likewise in 2016.
• Two Antoine Griezmann goals settled the semi-final at the Stade Vélodrome on 7 July 2016, taking France into a final they would lose to Portugal after extra time.
• France and Germany have met three times since that UEFA EURO 2016 fixture, including their first ever encounter in Munich – a goalless draw in the UEFA Nations League on 6 September 2018, Les Bleus' first outing since their World Cup triumph in Moscow.
• Griezmann again scored twice in the reverse fixture in that UEFA Nations League campaign, helping Les Bleus to a 2-1 win at the Stade de France on 16 October 2018. The France striker's second goal, an 80th-minute penalty, proved decisive, an early Toni Kroos spot kick having given the visitors the lead.
• Germany twice came from behind to salvage a 2-2 friendly draw against France in Cologne on 14 November 2017. Alexandre Lacazette scored twice for the away team with Timo Werner and – three minutes into stoppage time – Lars Stindl replying for the home side.
• Those results mean France have won 14 of the sides' 31 fixtures, compared to nine victories for Germany. Coaches Didier Deschamps and Joachim Löw have been in opposition for the last seven matches.
• France are unbeaten in five matches against Germany (W3 D2), since a 1-0 loss in the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals, Mats Hummels' early header settling the contest in Rio de Janeiro.
• Their five games at final tournaments have ended in two wins apiece and one draw, although that also went the Mannschaft's way, West Germany winning 5-4 on penalties after their 1982 World Cup semi-final had finished 3-3 in Spain.
• The same teams also crossed paths in the World Cup semi-finals four years later, West Germany triumphing 2-0 in Mexico. On both occasions, they went on to lose in the final.
• Their 2016 success was France's first competitive finals win against Germany since a 6-3 success in the third-place play-off at the 1958 World Cup.
• France's record away to Germany is W4 D4 L5. They are unbeaten in their last five such contests (W3 D2), since a 2-1 friendly defeat in Berlin in August 1987. Olivier Giroud scored his first international goal – on his first start for France – in a 2-1 friendly win in Bremen on 29 February 2012.
• This is the first time France and Germany have met in the group stage at a EURO or World Cup.
• Deschamps' record as a coach against Germany is W3 D2 L2; Löw's against France is W2 D2 L4.
EURO facts: France
• France reached their third UEFA European Championship final on home soil in 2016, only to lose 1-0 to Portugal after extra time at the Stade de France. That denied Les Bleus the chance to claim their third EURO title following their triumphs of 1984 and 2000.
• In 2016, Deschamps' team had finished first in their group ahead of Switzerland, Albania and Romania before beating the Republic of Ireland 2-1 – their first EURO knockout win since 2000 – in the round of 16. Iceland (5-2) and Germany were then defeated only for Portugal to run out winners in Saint-Denis.
• Les Bleus responded to that disappointment by winning their second World Cup in 2018, defeating Croatia 4-2 in the final to add to their title from 20 years earlier.
• Having won consecutive world (1998) and European (2000) titles with France as a player, Deschamps can repeat the feat as a coach; France aside, only West Germany (1972 EURO, 1974 World Cup) and Spain (2008 and 2012 EURO, 2010 World Cup) have held both titles at the same time.
• France qualified for the 2020 finals by finishing first in Group H, winning eight of their ten qualifiers (D1 L1) to pick up 25 points, two more than Turkey.
• The 2-0 loss in Turkey on 8 June 2019 is France's only defeat in 90 minutes in their last 17 EURO games (W13 D3).
• France are appearing at their 13th successive world or European final tournament; they have not missed out since the 1994 World Cup, and have reached five finals in that run, winning three of them.
• This is France's tenth EURO, and their eighth in a row; they last failed to qualify for the 1988 event.
• France's record in Germany overall, including matches against both West and East Germany and other countries, is W8 D8 L7. They reached the final of the 2006 World Cup in Germany, losing to Italy on penalties in Berlin. With that match classified as a draw, France are on a 12-match unbeaten run in Germany (W7 D5).
• That 2006 campaign featured France's only other game in Munich aside from the 2018 draw with Germany; a team coached by Raymond Domenech beat Portugal 1-0 in the semi-final.
EURO facts: Germany
• The Mannschaft are participating in their 13th successive EURO since missing out on the final tournament as West Germany in 1968, their first attempt.
• EURO winners in 1972, 1980 and 1996 – and three-time runners-up – Germany last missed out on the semi-finals in 2004, when they did not make it through the group stage. With three European titles, they are the competition's joint record winners alongside Spain.
• The 2016 defeat by France was Germany's eighth EURO semi-final and third defeat. The then-world champions had finished first in their section before beating Slovakia (3-0) and Italy (1-1, 6-5 pens) in the knockout rounds.
• Löw's side won seven of their eight qualifiers (L1) to book their place at UEFA EURO 2020. Having suffered their sole defeat, 4-2 at home to the Netherlands on 6 September 2019, Germany scored 15 goals in winning their last four matches.
• This is Germany's 26th successive appearance in a World Cup or EURO final tournament.
• This is Germany's first game in Munich since that goalless draw against France in September 2018, a result that gave them the overall record of W13 D5 L7 in the city. They have won four of their seven matches at the Football Arena Munich (D1 L2), although their joint heaviest UEFA European Championship loss came at the stadium, a 3-0 reverse against the Czech Republic in UEFA EURO 2008 qualifying.
• Germany won both games at the Football Arena Munich at the 2006 World Cup, beating Costa Rica 4-2 in the group stage and Sweden 2-0 in the round of 16. They also lifted the World Cup in the city in 1974 after a 2-1 victory over the Netherlands in the final; it was the hosts' only fixture in Munich during that tournament.
Links and trivia
• Have played in France:
Kevin Trapp (Paris Saint-Germain 2015–18)
Kevin Volland (Monaco 2020–)
• Have played in Germany:
Lucas Hernández (Bayern München 2019–)
Benjamin Pavard (Stuttgart 2016–19, Bayern München 2019–)
Corentin Tolisso (Bayern München 2017–)
Kingsley Coman (Bayern München 2015–)
Marcus Thuram (Borussia Mönchengladbach (2019–)
Ousmane Dembélé (Borussia Dortmund (2016/17)
• Have played together:
Raphaël Varane, Karim Benzema & Toni Kroos (Real Madrid 2014–)
Corentin Tolisso & Manuel Neuer, Joshua Kimmich, Niklas Süle, Thomas Müller (Bayern München 2017–)
Corentin Tolisso & Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka, Thomas Müller (Bayern München 2018–)
Lucas Hernández, Benjamin Pavard & Manuel Neuer, Niklas Süle, Joshua Kimmich, Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka, Thomas Müller (Bayern München 2019–)
Kingsley Coman & Manuel Neuer, Joshua Kimmich, Thomas Müller (Bayern München 2015–)
Kingsley Coman & Niklas Süle (Bayern München 2017–)
Kingsley Coman & Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka (Bayern München 2018–)
Kingsley Coman, Corentin Tolisso & Mats Hummels (Bayern München 2017–19)
Lucas Hernández, Benjamin Pavard, Kingsley Coman, Corentin Tolisso & Leroy Sané (Bayern München 2020–)
Presnel Kimpembe & Kevin Trapp (Paris Saint-Germain 2016–18)
N'Golo Kanté & Antonio Rüdiger (Chelsea 2017–)
Kurt Zouma & Antonio Rüdiger (Chelsea 2017, 2019–)
Olivier Giroud & Antonio Rüdiger (Chelsea 2018–)
Olivier Giroud & Serge Gnabry (Arsenal 2012–15)
Marcus Thuram & Matthias Ginter, Jonas Hofmann, Florian Neuhaus (Borussia Mönchengladbach (2019–)
Kurt Zouma, N'Golo Kanté, Olivier Giroud & Timo Werner, Kai Havertz (Chelsea 2020–)
Wissam Ben Yedder & Kevin Volland (Monaco 2020–)
Adrien Rabiot & Emre Can (Chelsea 2019–20)
• Griezmann fired a penalty against Neuer's crossbar as Bayern lost 1-0 at Atlético de Madrid in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League group stage. The Frenchman's goal past Neuer in Munich in the previous season's semi-final second leg had taken Atlético into the final at Bayern's expense.
• Gnabry scored four times past Hugo Lloris as Bayern won 7-2 at Tottenham in the UEFA Champions League group stage on 1 October 2019.
• Benzema scored three goals for Real Madrid against Borussia Mönchengladbach in the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League group stage, one in a 2-2 away draw in which Thuram got both the German club's goals and both in a decisive 2-0 home win. Mathias Ginter and Florian Neuhaus played in both games for the German side, with Jonas Hofmann featuring in the first.
• Benzema scored twice in Real Madrid's 2-2 draw at home to Bayern in the UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg on 1 May 2018; Hummels, Kimmich, Süle and Müller all featured for the visitors, who bowed out 4-3 on aggregate.
• Benzema's last competitive fixture for France was a 1-0 quarter-final defeat against Germany at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Hummels scoring the only goal.
• Kylian Mbappé scored twice past Neuer in the Football Arena Munich as Paris Saint-Germain beat Bayern 3-2 in the first leg of their 2020/21 UEFA Champions League quarter-final, which they went on to win on away goals. Süle, Kimmich, Goretzka, Müller and Sané were also in the Bayern side that evening.
• France coach Deschamps captained Marseille to a 1-0 victory against AC Milan in the 1993 UEFA Champions League final at the Olympiastadion in Munich – the only time a French club has won the competition. However, he was on the losing side in the same stadium four years later as Juventus were defeated 3-1 in the 1997 final by Borussia Dortmund.
• World champions France warmed up for UEFA EURO 2020 with two 3-0 home wins, defeating Wales in Nice on 2 June and Bulgaria in Saint-Denis six days later. That made it 16 victories in their last 20 matches, during which they have only suffered one defeat – 0-2 at home to Finland in a Stade de France friendly on 11 November 2020.
• Antoine Griezmann has scored in Les Bleus' last three matches to take his tally to 37 international goals – fourth on France's all-time list and nine behind team-mate Olivier Giroud, who lifted his haul to 46, five behind record-holder Thierry Henry, with a late double against Bulgaria.
• Didier Deschamps' experienced UEFA EURO 2020 squad includes two centurions in Giroud (108 caps) and captain Hugo Lloris (125). The 26 players collectively have 166 major tournament appearances and 27 goals between them.
• There are 14 of France's 2018 FIFA World Cup winners in the UEFA EURO 2020 squad, five of whom were also present on home soil at UEFA EURO 2016 – Lloris, Griezmann, Giroud, Paul Pogba and N'Golo Kanté. Three other players – Moussa Sissoko, Kingsley Coman and Lucas Digne – have returned for a second successive EURO having missed out on the World Cup triumph in Russia.
• Karim Benzema is back in the France fold, the friendlies against Wales and Bulgaria marking his first appearances for Les Bleus since October 2015. The 33-year-old Real Madrid striker is a veteran of the 2008 and 2012 EUROs though he has yet to score at the final tournament in six outings.
• Griezmann was the top scorer at UEFA EURO 2016, his six goals leaving him three shy of compatriot Michel Platini's joint-record mark at EURO finals and level with Henry. Griezmann and Giroud have both scored nine EURO goals, qualifiers included, the latter having registered three times at the finals.
• The 2020/21 season was a productive one for most of the players in the France squad as 15 of them collected major silverware with their clubs. Giroud, Kanté and Kurt Zouma were UEFA Champions League winners with Chelsea; Coman, Benjamin Pavard, Lucas Hernández and Corentin Tolisso were German champions with Bayern München; Thomas Lemar won the Spanish Liga with Atlético de Madrid; Mike Maignan was ever-present in goal for Ligue 1 winners LOSC Lille; Griezmann, Ousmane Dembélé and Clément Lenglet won the Copa del Rey with Barcelona; Adrien Rabiot was a Coppa Italia winner with Juventus; and Kylian Mbappé and Presnel Kimpembe lifted the Coupe de France with Paris Saint-Germain.
• Mbappé was Ligue 1's top scorer for the third season running, with 27 goals for Paris, and also found the net eight times in the UEFA Champions League. As at the 2018 World Cup, he remains, aged 22, the youngest player in France's squad.
• Mbappé was one of 20 players in the France squad who played UEFA Champions League football in 2020/21, with three others involved in the UEFA Europa League. The only players who missed out on European football were Everton's Digne, Monaco's Wissam Ben Yedder and Lyon's Léo Dubois.
• Germany's two pre-UEFA EURO 2020 friendlies brought a 1-1 draw with Denmark in Innsbruck and a 7-1 romp against Latvia in Düsseldorf in which there were seven different goalscorers, the first of them, Robin Gosens, opening his account for the Mannschaft.
• Those two games were notable for the return of erstwhile stalwarts Mats Hummels and Thomas Müller, neither of whom had played for Germany since November 2018. Christian Günter had an even longer wait for a return to national colours, his second cap, as a substitute in the draw against Denmark, coming seven years after his first, while Kevin Volland's appearance in Innsbruck was his first since November 2016.
• The game against Latvia was also a significant one for goalkeeper and captain Manuel Neuer as it was his 100th international appearance for Germany, making him the third centurion in the UEFA EURO 2020 squad alongside Müller and Toni Kroos (both 102 caps).
• Twelve players have survived Germany's shock group stage exit at the 2018 World Cup to retain their places in Joachim Löw's selection this time around, though only eight remain from UEFA EURO 2016 – Neuer, Hummels, Müller, Kroos, Joshua Kimmich and non-World Cup participants Bernd Leno, Emre Can and Leroy Sané.
• Remarkably no player in Germany's UEFA EURO 2020 squad has ever scored in the EURO finals, Müller having competed in 11 final tournament matches without a goal, Kroos in ten and Hummels in nine. Müller, who in contrast has scored ten World Cup final tournament goals, even missed his penalty in the 2016 quarter-final shoot-out against Italy.
• Eight members of Bayern München's 2020/21 Bundesliga-winning side have been selected for this squad – Neuer, Kimmich, Sané, Müller, Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka, Niklas Süle and Jamal Musiala, the youngest player in the party at 18.
• Other 2020/21 trophy winners in the squad are Dortmund pair Hummels and Can, who won the DFB-Pokal, Manchester City's Premier League champion İlkay Gündoğan, and UEFA Champions League winners Antonio Rüdiger, Timo Werner and final goalscorer Kai Havertz of Chelsea.
• There were 21 members of Löw's EURO squad in UEFA Champions League action during the 2020/21 season, plus Leno in the UEFA Europa League, with only Freiburg's Günter, Monaco's Volland, Eintracht Frankfurt's Kevin Trapp and Leeds United's Robin Koch not involved in continental club competition.