Hans-Joachim Watzke (64) defended the national soccer team’s overseas trip shortly before departure.

“Firstly, it’s very interesting because we have the World Cup there in two and a half years. The players, I noticed that with us too, the players are up for it. There’s no question about that, because the USA is a good location are beautiful places and it’s fun there. At some point we have to show ourselves a little,” said the managing director of Borussia Dortmund and DFL boss in an interview with “Deutschlandfunk”. However, he could not travel to the USA because of an upcoming operation.

He can understand criticism of the scheduling of the international matches against the USA on October 14th in Hartford (9 p.m./RTL) and against Mexico on October 18th (2 a.m.) in Philadelphia. Bayern Munich coach Thomas Tuchel recently complained massively about the strain on his players caused by the trip to America in the middle of the Bundesliga season.

“I also know that there are arguments against it, but the decision was made by the DFB, and it’s no use if we keep problematising it,” said the multi-functionary, who is also DFB vice-president.

Expectations of Nagelsmann

National coach Julian Nagelsmann (36) gathers his squad in Frankfurt in the evening. On Monday we leave from there for Boston. The DFB team is preparing for its first games under Nagelsmann as head coach at the grounds of the NFL club New England Patriots in nearby Foxborough.

The trip could also make sense from a sporting point of view, said Watzke. “It’s actually a sign of openness to such things, and I think it’s good to have the team together for a longer period of time, especially for the new coach, in an environment that they actually find quite good,” he said.

Watzke expects Nagelsmann to bring a sporting upswing, which will then lead to a better football mood among the recently severely disappointed fans for the 2024 European Championship at home. “What’s important is how we perform, but we have a good team. Most of the players play for top international clubs. We have a good coach with us. We have home advantage, which is always a big aspect. So I still think that we play a good Euro, and then there will be enthusiasm,” said Watzke.