Defending World Cup champions Germany open their defense of that title Sunday, traveling to Norway for their first qualifying match in Group C of the UEFA tournament, a match that will stream live as Norway simply hopes to survive to win a spot in the 2018 World Cup in Russia. While Die Mannschaft appears assured of qualification, barring some unforeseen disaster, and will try to become only the third nation ever to win back-to-back World Cup titles.
Italy accomplished the feat in 1934 and 1938. Brazil later reigned as repeat champions, winning the 1958 and 1962 tournaments.
Neuer: “We don’t know Norway that well, but we analysed them and want to take the 3 points from Oslo” pic.twitter.com/2kXequjXjR
— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) September 2, 2016
But Germany embark on the two-year journey that they hope will end with that second consecutive World Cup under a new captain, as 30-year-old goalkeeper Manuel Neuer takes the armband from retiring Germany legend Bastian Schweinsteiger.
Schweinsteiger signed off from international football after the 2-0 Germany victory in an international friendly over Finland on Wednesday.
Watch highlights of Bastian Schweinsteiger playing his final international match for Germany in the video below.
Other than the absence of the Manchester United star, Germany under Manager Joachim Low expect to field largely the same starting XI as in the 2016 European Championships in July.
Germany’s likely lineup looks like this: Neuer, Kimmich, Hummels, Howedes, Hector, Kroos, Weigl, Ozil, Muller, Draxler, Volland.
Norway Manager Per-Mathias Hogmo has made a surprise omission, however, benching Real Madrid player Martin Odegaard, with Premier League side Hull City’s Adama Diomande and Hertha Berlin midfielder Per Ciljan Skjebred now anchoring the attack for the largely defense-minded Norway squad.
Norway’s expected lineup looks like this: Jarstein, Svensson, Rogne, Hovland, Linnes, Tettey, Skjelbred, Henriksen King, Diomande, Berget.
To find out how to watch a live stream of the Norway vs. Germany World Cup Group C Qualifier match, see the streaming links at the bottom of this article. Kickoff is scheduled for 8:45 p.m. Central European Summer Time at Ullevaal Stadion in Oslo, Norway, on Sunday, September 4.
For fans in the United States, the live stream will get underway at 2:45 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, 11:45 a.m. Pacific. Viewers in the United Kingdom can log in to the Norway vs. Germany live stream at 7:45 p.m.
Toni Kroos & Germany National Team completed their last training session before facing Norway tomorrow pic.twitter.com/qhwjstUWuC
— Yassine (@TeamKroos) September 3, 2016
Placed in Group C alongside Norway, San Marino, Azerbaijan, Northern Ireland and Czech Republic, Germany is expected to sail through the qualifying stage and into the final World Cup tournament in Russia.
But the match with Norway could present a few problems, if only from unfamiliarity. Germany — including in its previous incarnation as West Germany — and Norway have faced each other only five times in the last 50 years, all in friendly matches.
Sunday’s World Cup qualifying match will mark the first time Germany and Norway have not played a match that actually counted since 1953.
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A live stream of the match may be found by clicking here — or, watch the Norway vs. Germany World Cup Qualifier opening match stream live online from Ullevaal Stadion in Oslo, Norway, by clicking on this link, or by going to Fox Sports Go at this link, or downloading the Fox Sports Go app to watch on tablet computers and smartphones. However, Fox Sports Go also streams live on the Amazon Fire TV and Roku set-top devices, allowing fans to watch the Norway vs. Germany Group C World Cup Qualifier stream live online on their TV sets.
In addition, the Sling TV internet TV streaming service carries Fox Sports 2, which will broadcast the Norway vs. Germany game. Click here for a seven-day free trial of Sling, allowing fans to watch the Norway vs. Germany World Cup Qualifier opening match stream live at no charge. The Playstation Vue internet TV service also carries FS2, and also comes with a seven-day free trial, which may be accessed at this link for free viewing of the World Cup qualifier live stream.
Finally, fans in the United Kingdom can watch a live stream of Norway vs. Germany via the NOW TV Sky Sports Pass, which charges a fee, but can be accessed by clicking on this link.
[Photo By Lars Baron/Getty Images]