Joachim Low hid behind dark sunglasses on Thursday morning, just hours after Germany’s humiliating World Cup exit
Joachim Low hid his face with dark sunglasses as Germany’s humiliated squad headed home from the World Cup on Thursday morning.
The reigning world champions were tipped to go all the way in Russia, but an incredible defeat by South Korea on Wednesday saw them crash out at the group stages for the first time in history.
They will now head home to face the music and the players’ faces were a picture of disappointment as they loaded their cases through security at Vnukovo Airport in the Russian capital on Thursday.
The players looked distraught as they headed home, while Jerome Boateng wore a bag with the word ‘supreme’ on the back
The players wait to put their suitcases through security at Vnukovo Airport in Russia before boarding a flight back to Germany
Germany’s Lufthansa plane, called the ‘Fanhansa’, sits at the Vnukov Airport ready to fly the team out of Russia
Toni Kroos and Manuel Neuer were among the players pictured before getting on the plane, while Jerome Boateng was wearing a rucksack adorned with the word ‘Supreme’.
His choice of attire was ironic to say the least, given that his performances at the tournament were far from impressive. Indeed, he was sent off in the latter stages of his side’s game against Sweden and was suspended for the decider against South Korea.
That game was the one which confirmed their shock exit from the tournament, as they fell to an incredible 2-0 defeat thanks to two late goals in Kazan.
An incredibly honest tweet was also sent from the national team’s official Twitter account the morning after the game, admitting that they deserved to be heading home.
It read: ‘Dear fans, we feel just as disappointed as you. The World Cup only comes around every four years and we expected so much more from us.
‘We’re sorry for not playing like world champions, and as painful as it is, we deserve to be out…’
Miroslav Klose (left) and Marco Reus wheel their cases through the airport, and there were no smiles on show from the squad
Sami Khedira and a member of the backroom staff head for the plane in Moscow after crashing out of the World Cup
Suitcases with Germany stickers and ‘Die Mannschaft’ tags wait to be put on the plane after Germany’s early World Cup exit
Boateng hid his eyes with sunglasses just hours after Germany’s shock exit at the hands of South Korea at the World Cup
Chelsea’s Rudiger and Arsenal’s Ozil walked together through the airport on Thursday, both carrying their suit jackets
A follow-up tweet then said: ‘Your support across the globe was incredible. We celebrated together in 2014, but sometimes in football you have to accept defeat and admit that your opponents were better.
‘Congrats to Sweden and Mexico, and of course to South Korea on their win. Thanks to Russia for your hospitality!’
Germany were tipped to go deep into the tournament and had the potential to face England in the quarter-final, but they will be watching the top teams from the comfort of their sofas in Germany now.
Kim Young-gwon and Son Heung-min scored the goals in Kazan, both of them coming in added time as Germany threw everyone forward for a late goal.
Goalkeeper Neuer took some stick for his positioning in the final seconds, with South Korea’s second goal coming while the stopper was nearer the halfway line than his goal.
Manuel Neuer branded the squad ‘pathetic’ after the game, and he too looked disappointed as he arrived at the airport
Reus (left) loads his suitcase onto the security conveyor belt as the players begin their journey back to Germany
Mats Hummels collects some paperwork from a member of the Germany backroom team just hours after their defeat
Germany’s players were pictured leaving the Vatutinki Hotel Spa Complex on their way to the airport on Thursday morning
In the aftermath of the match, Neuer branded Germany’s flops as ‘pathetic’ and questioned their commitment.
‘We deserved to be eliminated. We didn’t convince in any game. This was not the Germany we know. It was pathetic.
‘We lacked commitment. Even if we had gone through, in the next round or the round afterwards, we’d have been knocked out.’
As the fallout began in earnest, manager Joachim Low also admitted they got precisely what they deserved in their 2-0 defeat in Kazan.
‘The disappointment of being eliminated is just huge,’ said Low. ‘I’m shocked. It is historic. I am sure this will create some public uproar in Germany.’
Germany’s players will certainly not have expected to be packing their bags this early when they headed out to Russia
Low may yet leave his position as Germany manager, but has asked for some time to think before making a final decision
Ilkay Gundogan (left) and Reus go through security together as they prepare to leave Russia much earlier than anticipated
Germany’s players looked distraught at the end of the match against South Korea as they crashed out at the group stages
He promised to digest the shambles of this campaign before making any decisions about his own future. ‘This is hard to say at this point,’ said Low. ‘I’m shocked because we didn’t pull it off. It’s premature for me to say something. I’m incredibly disappointed.
‘In our training camp we prepared really well for the role of reigning champions ready to be hunted down. But we have not put in the performance we normally do. We have to admit this is a defeat.
‘Until quite recently we have been the most consistent, always among the final four. Now we are out which is absolute sadness but this has happened to nations before. We have young players who are very talented.’
Julian Draxler (left) joins his Germany team-mates at the airport as they begin the long slog back from Russia
Manager Low will surely take a lot of the blame when Germany arrive back home after their humiliating World Cup journey
There were plenty of cameras trained on the Germany squad when they headed from their hotel to the airport in Moscow
South Korea’s players look delighted after scoring against Germany in their final World Cup group match at the Kazan Arena
Reus and Thomas Muller sit on the bench in Kazan after their disastrous 2-0 defeat by South Korea sent them packing