By Oliver Trust
BERLIN, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- It didn't take much to find out about the bad mood of German national coach Joachim Loew after a devastating 3-0 defeat in the newly formed Nations League. The 58-year-old took a few minutes off smoking a cigarette behind the team's bus before trying to explain what has hit German football like a shock.
The 2014 world champion coach has reached a new low point after 12 years in charge. A defeat in Paris against the reigning world champion France this Tuesday evening followed by the most likely demotion to League B maybe drawing his near end as Germany's national coach.
Until now Loew relied on the support of several of his world champions such as Manuel Neuer, Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng, and Thomas Mueller (all Bayern Munich).
But Germany's cornerstones currently can't deliver what Loew and German football desperately need to manage a successful re-start after last summer's bitter disappointment when the team suffered from an early group exit at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Having to face France, only one possible solution seems left: Loew has to initiate a fundamental change and step over what can be seen as an emotional shadow. For long the German coach counted on what he called "his ax" on the pitch. For long he relied on heroes of the past.
But the era of Germany's golden generation seems to have come to an end. There still is time left to press the rescue button while fans have lost faith in their team and Loew's credit appears to be entirely spent.
Leading German media demand from Loew to risk a new start with new faces. Otherwise, they assume, Loew's time will run out soon. "I know we have to face this discussion now. But it is not my job to think about the public's opinion but to care about the team," Loew commented.
The defeat in Amsterdam was Germany's fifth defeat in 2018. For the first time, the German team didn't manage to score in three consecutive games in a major competition. To be relegated would mean to only stand for second class football.
Loew spoke about his boundless disappointment as "established players should take responsibility in the last quarter of the game and not cause further chaos."
Now the pressure on Loew has reached a new climax.
The Berlin-based tabloid Bild called Germany's Nations League group game against France "a final for Loew." The paper said confidence in Loew hasn't been lower than at present adding: The crisis of the German national team is a crisis of Joachim Loew.
The Munich-based Sueddeutsche spoke about a "nightmare like evening," and the Frankfurter Allgemeine spoke about what until now seemed to lie beyond imagination: "Germany is in danger to be relegated."
The team's leaders have turned into the team's most significant burden the Hamburg-based news-magazine "Der Spiegel" commented.
Others assume Loew's time could end in November when Germany is facing the Netherlands in their Nations League home game. "Loew faces stormy autumn," the Essen-based Westdeutsche Allgemeine commented.
The duel against their old rival France, Loew's 169th game a German national coach, seems the last chance to find convincing answers and count on challengers such as Leroy Sane (Manchester City), Julian Brandt (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Paris St Germain) and Timo Werner (RB Leipzig) and, most important at all, change the team's game strategy.