However, in a blow as ruthless and as precisely executed as his stunning 29-yard, 83.5mph match-winner in the 69th minute at the Westfalenstadion, he sounded a note of typically Teutonic practicality.
“They have a good team, a good manager, they a play a different style to before,” he enthused, still in his kit hours after the final whistle, talking to anybody and everybody about his final night of international football.
“Before it was a like a rugby style, they were physical. They play more football now. Now they have a good team, great players, good guys, good characters, good style.”
Even with the beatific smile stretched across his face as he exuded his own personal euphoria, there was something of a kicker to deliver though.
“If they go to a tournament they are always nervous, they always play too much under pressure,” he said.
“Let’s see what happens in the World Cup – I will be keeping an eye on England as well to see how they play.”
Lukas Podolski believes England no longer resemble a rugby team
England player ratings against Germany
Wed, March 22, 2017
Express Sport brings you England's player ratings from their defeat to Germany
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Until Podolski’s goal, Gareth Southgate’s men had gone up against the world champions and looked like world beaters.
Six months after Sam Allardyce had announced Wayne Rooney was the pivotal element of his team and the rest of the players would fit in around him, Southgate had derived a formula and chosen the personnel to carry it out accordingly.
In the absence of the former England talisman, the result was a high-energy, cohesive force which swamped a Germany side admittedly stripped of several of its big names but surprised by the intensity of England’s game nevertheless.
Michael Keane took to a back three like he had been playing there all his life; Dele Alli and Adam Lallana were twin tormentors of Germany’s back line, while Jamie Vardy was there to jump on any error. With positive performances like those littered around the field, the result did not really matter.
“I have got to have a mentality that the friendlies have to serve a purpose,” said Southgate. “It would be easy just to view them as games that have to be won, and then you don’t risk, don’t try things and you don’t give people opportunities. Would we make all the changes we did in another scenario?
“In a game like that, that’s the purpose. If you don’t put lads in, you’ll never find out about them. Performances like Michael Keane is a real plus.”
Dele Alli caught the eye in England's defeat to Germany
Except that in “real” football the result palpably does matter. Thankfully, it was only in friendlies that Southgate’s side surrendered a 2-0 lead against Spain in five disastrous late minutes and all that territorial advantage and enterprise left England with precisely nothing in Dortmund.
Fortunately Southgate is astute enough – and quietly competitive enough – to recognise that.
“The margins are fine, but we don’t want to be a team who are nearly but not quite,” he said. “The games with Spain and Germany where we should get over the line, and win both, we haven’t.
“That is the bit that is important: we have to keep working and improving and challenging them.”
Lithuania on Sunday is a step down in opposition but this time the result does matter. England are well placed in Group F with 10 points from their opening four games but there is no room for anybody to rest on their laurels.
For the first time in his tenure, there is a sense of expectation going into the game. England fans want to see the same commitment and desire from their players and, for the most part, the same three-at-the-back system.
Gareth Southgate watched his England side lose 1-0 to Germany
Formation-wise, that may not happen as Southgate continues to keep his cards close to his chest having planned this tactic specifically to break down the German defence. But he is hoping a consistency of spirit is certainly bedding in now.
“It doesn’t come instantly but people would see a clear identity to what we are trying to do in both systems we’ve played,” he said.
“You would be disappointed if we’re not having an impact and we have, in terms of mentality and in terms of style of play.
“The winning bit has got to come but the tests like this are really important – play two top teams, and take more from that than playing teams we might have rolled over more easily.”
With all due respect, Lithuania are a team that England might expect to “roll over more easily”. Is it too much to hope we will be treated to one last slice of rugby in the scoreline?