Germany have to improve the attacking side of their game, if they're to flourish and fulfill their maximum potential at this year's European Championships. Jerome Boateng, 27, was public in his criticism of his team-mates, warning them they could struggle if they don't sharpen up in the final third.
In their 0-0 draw against Poland yesterday, they only recorded three shots on target - and were fortunate to win a point, in a game that the Poles could've easily won, but for some smart and resolute defensive actions when the pressure was building.
Poland could've prevailed in intriguing encounter
Arkadiusz Milik in particular, squandered two promising opportunities in the second 45 as Bayern's Robert Lewandowski was not his usual effective self. As quoted by ESPN, Boateng said the team as a whole can "be pleased" that they've drawn against Adam Nawałka's side considering their performance.
"We did not win any one-on-one duels in attack. There was not a lot of movement - it just wasn't enough."
We need to improve in final third, Boateng warns
He continued, saying that they need to "take shots" as they're "not dangerous" in the final third, which is something that needs to be improved - "otherwise we won't get far."
With two group games completed, Joachim Löw has a few choices to make ahead of their final encounter - against Northern Ireland. Michael O'Neill's men will be on a high having prevailed 2-0 against Ukraine on a rainy afternoon on Thursday, and with Thomas Müller in particular struggling to find much joy in the final third, could it be time for some changes? Schalke's talented 20-year-old winger Leroy Sané was widely expected to feature at some stage against the Poles, but remained on the substitutes' bench. Toni Kroos is the creative spark, alongside Mesut Özil whilst Julian Draxler has been catching the eye on the wing. With that being said though, all of their possession and probing passing struggled to get them many opportunities against a resolute backline: a sign of things to come, or a one-off?