Five duels for a final

The members of the Spanish basketball team celebrate their victory against Finland in the quarterfinals. / CLEMENS BILAN / efe

Eurobasket / Semifinal

Spain faces the host Germany this Friday in a fight of opposite styles to secure the medal at the Eurobasket

Germany, "the best team so far" as Sergio Scariolo said on Thursday, and Spain face each other this Friday (8:30 p.m., Telecinco) for a place in the Eurobasket final. Two teams that started the tournament lamenting the important absences they had and that have shown that their collective framework is above any individuality. "We are all humble and supportive," Rudy Fernández testified.

Scariolo could not count on Ricky Rubio, Llull, Abalde, Abrines and Claver, while Gordon Hebert lost Moritz Wagner, Tibor Pleiss, Óscar Da Silva, Isaac Bonga, Maxi Kleber and Isaiah Hartenstein in the preparation. Losses that few are missing since a vibrant championship started. This second semi-final (the first, France-Poland, is played at 5:15 p.m.), is presented as a battle between two saves that have reached their maximum performance. Each with their weapons. Germany, the favourite, with the best attack in the entire competition. 93.6 points on average, exceeding one hundred in three of the seven games. Spain, with the defense by flag. Difficult to approach when Alberto Díaz, Rudy and Garuba coincide on the pitch. Although both styles are reversible.

Because Scariolo's are the team that takes the most rebounds in attack (14.7) and has an average of 90.4 points despite their problems from beyond the arc. The Teutons, for their part, eliminated Greece by forcing them from defensive intensity to make decisions that were least in their favor, such as Antetokounmpo's outside shot.

Precedents in favor

The precedents favor Spain (11-2), but old water does not move mills. Since 1999, the team has only been off the podium in 2005, after losing in the semifinals against the German team, which has not played metal since then. 74-73, with Dirk Nowitzki scoring the winning basket over Jorge Garbajosa. Now everything has changed. One is president of the Spanish Federation and the other a luxury spectator of a Eurobasket that is decided in Berlin. A hostess condition that can also tip the scales. Influencing with its gala atmosphere in five individual duels that can be seen on the floor of the Mercedes Benz Arena.

Franz Wagner-Rudy Fernandez

-The multidisciplinary eaves

Germany has a 40.4% success rate in triples, they have scored 17 against Greece and the Magic forward has a good fault for it. 5 out of 7 in quarters and a 51.5% success rate so far in the competition. And not throwing little precisely. But if he stands out for something, it is for his versatility, game without the ball and agility in his 2.08 meters. The 12 centimeter difference -and 16 years younger- with respect to Rudy (1.96) suggests that the Germans will seek to take advantage of that superiority in the low post. Nothing new for the Mallorcan.

Daniel Theis-Willy Hernangomez

-Interior headlights

Here the offensive potential is carried by the Spanish and the defensive by the German. Theis is an energetic, endless-armed, rocky center who is difficult to move; he the Teutonic anchor in the area. Against Greece he was decisive, with 13 points, 16 rebounds and countless spaces occupied in the rearguard. The Spanish center is showing all the fundamentals and offensive resources that he treasures near the rim after being overshadowed from 2015 to 2021 by the presence of the Gasols. The man from Madrid is confirming himself as the leader of the Spain of the rookies.

Maodo Lo-Lorenzo Brown

-The stilettos of free verse

When the attacks are entangled, they appear. Their technical quality can be differential in key moments, since their pulse does not tremble when it comes to assuming responsibility. With much more weight with the ball Lorenzo Brown, who averages 13.4 points and 7.4 assists. Due to his partnership with Willy and his talent for generating comfortable shots for his teammates, a good part of Spain's options pass. He will have to take great care of the losses that have weighed him down at times, since Germany scores many points in transition and would incite the game to go crazy.

Johannes Voigtmann-Juancho Hernangomez

-The reliability of the minions

Johannes Voigtmann-Juancho Hernangomez. They are like those actors who alternate the roles of leading and supporting. They never clash, but their great performances appear with discontinuity and without firmness to hit the table. Voigtmann is a luxury as a second sword. Hebert's leading rebounder with 7.1 sacks (1.7 on offense), he is capable of playing 'four' and 'five', with great tactical intelligence. Juancho will have to roll up his sleeves. Unlike in the 2019 World Cup, Scariolo is using him primarily as a power forward.

Andreas Obst-Usman Garuba

-The gunpowder of the benches

One is escort and the other is interior. Their game has nothing to do with it and they may not meet throughout the game, but their role can be decisive. They are player number '6' of each team. Those who do not usually play the final minutes, but leave their mark on the previous ones. Andreas Obst is emerging as a top-reliability shooter. Garuba is different. A regular off the bench, his defensive role, like Rudy, allows him to pair up with just about any player, and his transition runs may start to define the runner-up.

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