Review: 71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

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The Collectable Minifigures range has been punctuated by some unusual series but 71014 DFB German Football Team is one of the oddest yet, representing sixteen players from the German squad in celebration of Euro 2016. We initially thought that the range would only be available in Germany, Austria and Switzerland but it now transpires that LEGO Stores in the rest of Europe have them in stock, although possibly not in great volume.

I have been able to acquire a full set so can bring you the first review on the Internet of all sixteen minifigures! Read on and find out whether they are worth adding to your collection...

Minifigures

Germany are the current holders of the FIFA World Cup and this success has been attributed in no small part to their current manager, Joachim Löw. I am pleased that LEGO recognised his contribution when selecting which members of the squad to include in this series and his distinctive appearance compliments the uniformity of the rest of the players when all sixteen are displayed together. The minifigure is easily recognisable as Löw, due in particular to the open collared shirt which is printed on his torso and has become a trademark of his apparently relaxed attitude.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Löw is the only minifigure in this series not to come with a football. Instead he is equipped with a printed 2x2 tile featuring a tactical board design. His head is printed with some wrinkles and a friendly smile while the black hair piece approximates his true hairstyle quite effectively. Although the figure is clearly representative of Löw when it is assembled, the individual components could easily be used for creating other minifigures.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Manuel Neuer is widely considered one of the best goalkeepers of all time and he has been Germany's first choice for this position since 2010. His head and hair are fairly generic but they suit him quite nicely in my opinion while the black shirt worn by German goalkeepers is an exceptionally good match for the jersey which will be worn at Euro 2016. The Adidas and German football team logos are present alongside some white stripes and the back of the torso is printed with the player's name and number.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

His shorts are also decorated with the insignia of the German national team, although I was slightly disappointed to find that his legs are not dual-moulded but are printed on three sides instead. Like Joachim Löw and the rest of his teammates, Neuer stands on a white base which is printed with four silver stars. He also comes with a football, as do the fourteen outfield players.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Four defenders are included in the series, the first of which is Shkodran Mustafi. This hair piece is currently exclusive to Mustafi in reddish brown and closely replicates his true appearance, as does his head which is printed with some thick facial hair. The heads of Benedikt Höwedes and Mats Hummels are also decorated with some stubble and they wear the same hair components, albeit in different colours.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

This spiky hair has appeared before in black but never in medium dark flesh as it does on Höwedes. I am not sure why Hummels features a slightly darker skin tone than his counterpart as this does not reflect his true ethnicity, although it is nice to see some variety as these figures would look very similar otherwise.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

The Jerome Boateng minifigure is equally impressive and I am pleased to see a new expression printed on a reddish brown head as relatively few are available at the moment. I like the hair piece which has been used and it is probably the best likeness that can be achieved for his actual hair without creating a new element, although it is not a perfect match.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

All fourteen outfield players share the same torso printing on the front while the back is decorated with their respective names and squad numbers. Their arms are dual moulded with short sleeves and some exposed skin, the colour of which corresponds with that of their head and legs. The printing on the front and back of each torso looks brilliant but I should mention that the silver stripe running down the front is far less pronounced on the real shirts than it is on the minifigure.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

The same is true of the midfielders, eight of which are included. This seems like a striking imbalance to me but their selection of players cannot be faulted as all eight are regulars in the German starting eleven. Their torsos and legs are identical but for their skin colours and the fact that Bastian Schweinsteiger is identified as the captain by the German flag printed on his left sleeve, representing the captain's armband.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

The word spielführer, meaning team captain, is also printed on the armband which shows excellent attention to detail on the part of the graphic designer.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Schweinsteiger's head is a good likeness for the real player and his hair piece is an appropriate choice too. This component has not appeared in blonde before and André Schürrle's hair falls into the same category as it also appears in blonde for the first time so is potentially useful for creating other minifigures.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Mesut Özil makes use of the same hair piece but in black, a colour first used by Superman in 76044 Clash of the Heroes. Like many of their teammates, Özil and Schürrle have stubble printed on their faces but I think they show a reasonable resemblance to their real life counterparts which is no easy feat.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Sami Khedira's skin tone is a little darker than most of the figures which replicates his Tunisian ancestry and his face printing is also faithful to reality. I am not totally convinced by the hair piece which has been selected as Khedira's hair is fairly long and this is not captured properly. Nevertheless, the beard is recognisable as Khedira's and I like the minifigure.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Emmet's unique hair piece is finally re-used in a new colour here for attacking midfielder Toni Kroos and I think it looks splendid. Both his head and hair are faithful to reality and I am glad to get yet another hair element in a new colour.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Mario Götze is similarly impressive, particularly with regard to his face which is unlike any other in the range while his hair is new in reddish brown, a useful colour. These two pieces are among the most reusable of the series and are also a good likeness for Götze so are successful in all regards.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Christoph Kramer has an enormous grin which is rather distracting, although the detail of the facial hair around his mouth makes up for this in my opinion and it is nice to see differing emotions on display as some players are more serious while others are smiling. His hair piece is suitable in its colour and shape but for the fact that it is swept to the wrong side which is a very minor issue.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

The eighth and final midfielder is Marco Reus. His head is also printed with some light stubble and he shares the medium dark flesh hair colour of Kramer, although this time using the combed piece which is worn by a couple of other minifigures in this series. A more unkempt component might have been appropriate but this is a reasonable compromise as it is best to avoid reusing the hair pieces too often.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Only two strikers are included, Thomas Müller and Max Kruse. Müller is one of the weaker minifigures in my opinion as his head makes him look much older than he is and does not really reflect his appearance. His hair, on the other hand, looks great and the wrinkles printed on the face do permit a wider range of uses than some of the heads which could only be used for younger minifigures.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

While Thomas Müller's head is a little disappointing, Max Kruse's is one of my favourites. It perfectly captures his stubbly beard and his hair piece is an equally impressive likeness, although a slightly darker colour might have been more appropriate, perhaps even reddish brown.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

A great deal of thought must have gone into the design of these minifigures and I think it shows. Differences in appearance are often fairly subtle and this is reflected by the figures in this series, although they can also be differentiated by more than just their name and squad number. LEGO has never attempted to recreate so many real people before, instead representing movie or comic book characters as minifigures, but I think this effort has been very successful on the whole.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

All sixteen minifigures come with an attractive base, featuring the four stars which represent Germany's four World Cup victories, while fifteen of them are equipped with a football. This is decorated with a traditional truncated icosahedral pattern and Joachim Löw comes with a printed tactical board.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Feeling the bags

Telling these minifigures apart by feeling the bags is more difficult than any previous series as most can only be distinguished by their hair pieces and some even share the same styles, as listed below.

  • 23186 - Mesut Özil, André Schürrle, Mario Götze, Christoph Kramer, Max Kruse
  • 99930 - Shkodran Mustafi, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Marco Reus
  • 18228 - Benedikt Höwedes, Mats Hummels, Thomas Müller
  • 15500 - Joachim Löw
  • 62810 - Manuel Neuer
  • 92081 - Sami Khedira
  • 21778 - Jerome Boateng
  • 15443 - Toni Kroos

A certain amount of luck is required as a result of these similarities, although there are some techniques which might increase your chances of feeling for the minifigures you want.

Joachim Löw is by far the easiest figure to find as he is the only one to include a 2x2 tile rather than a football. Manuel Neuer, Jérôme Boateng, Toni Kroos and Sami Khedira are also relatively simple as they all sport unique hair pieces, although some of these are quite tricky to differentiate given the relatively subtle distinctions between them. For instance, Toni Kroos' hair feels a lot like that of Schweinsteiger, Mustafi and Reus but features a bump on the top which can be felt through the packet.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

The rest of the minifigures require some guesswork. I felt through about thirty packets yesterday, dividing them according to their hair pieces, before purchasing five with piece 23186, three with piece 99930 and three containing piece 18228. The odds of choosing eleven different minifigures and therefore completing the set without any duplicates are slim and in the likely event that you are not immediately successful, it is mathematically best to buy subsequent minifigures one at a time until you have all sixteen.

Duplicates are almost inevitable but this is not a major problem as most minifigures come with an exclusive hair piece and all sixteen offer new facial designs which can easily be used elsewhere. Furthermore, the limited availability of this series is likely to create demand for the figures on the aftermarket so selling or trading unwanted minifigures is a useful option.

Overall

I was unsure what to make of these minifigures when they were first revealed as some of the players look very similar and the absence of new parts reduces their appeal to some extent. However, any reservations I had have quickly evaporated and I am desperately hoping that we see some similar series in future as this seems like a formula which could be replicated very effectively for other teams and sports.

71014 DFB German Football Team Collectable Minifigures

Their limited availability and the difficulty involved in feeling the bags is frustrating but if you are a football fan then I think these minifigures are worth picking up, for their exclusivity if nothing else. Alternatively, they are an excellent source of new hair pieces and head prints so it might be worth finding some if they are in your area or looking on Bricklink. These figures definitely offer an extra flavour to a Collectable Minifigure collection and I wholeheartedly recommend purchasing some if you get the opportunity.

What do you think of this series and what other sports teams would you like to see in minifigure form?

50 comments on this article

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By in United Kingdom,

Out of stock in UK stores and Lego S@H cancelled my order

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By in United Kingdom,

What's with the dimples on the hands? I've not seen those on a minifig before.

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By in {Unknown country},

^Was just about to ask that!

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By in United States,

they got Marco reus' number wrong... its 11

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By in Venezuela,

I love all of them

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By in Germany,

Just came home with 8 bags. Only 1 duplicate (Andre Schürrle) :D

I hope they will do a Champions League Series or WWE Series sometime in the future :)

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By in Germany,

The armband printing is pretty bad, you can barely read it. On the one I got, the printing is partly on the fleshy part of the arm, too.
I would have loved a series with great footballers of all time, with this series, you get many players who will either not even play at the Championship or who will sink back into obscurity. Also the price is simply to high, useful hair pieces or not. Series 15 showed what kind of awesome detail and add-ons they can pack into the bags, but this is rather underwhelming. Who needs fifteen additional balls, really? These minifigs will end up like the "Team Telekom" cyclists.

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By in Greece,

"What's with the dimples on the hands? I've not seen those on a minifig before."

That's what i first saw and it totally stampeded all the following beautiful printings...

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By in United Kingdom,

They all look so haggard. The stress of Euro 2016 is really getting to them.

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By in Germany,

I would also like to see famous players from other nations in their official shirts.
That would be a real reason to start collecting figures.

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By in United States,

I'm not a huge soccer fan, but I really like the variety of faces and headpieces.

I ordered 6 for a soccer-obsessed friend of mine from a German BL store for the very reasonable price of 4.87 USD each. I also got an extra Mario Götze for myself, as I love the brown Supes hair. :)

I'd love to see an American Baseball series!

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By in Finland,

@DJLeo it's 11 in dortmund, but in national team it's 21

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By in Germany,

Sold out on German Shop@Home and a few other German retailers. Damn... Must get my Jogi Löw...

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By in United Kingdom,

Great review! I bought ten in Stratford this morning (eight different) and they are lovely.

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By in United States,

I now have a craving for a little milk chocolate ball.

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By in United States,

Not a soccer/football fan, but it would be neat to get one of these guys as a representative for my CMF collection. Get a license to make Major League Baseball players for that would retail for less than OYO's $9.99 price tag, and I'll be trying to put together a full set.

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By in United Kingdom,

The figures look good, I have to say, dispite the fact that I don't really like football. I still think its stupid that they've dedicated a whole series to football but still haven't done minifigs from these sports in the regular series: Cycling, rugby, basketball, sprinting, long distance running, golf, badminton... The list goes on, but I can't be bothered typing it. I mean, we got a racing driver in only series 3, so I think it's strange that none of these sports have been represented in the collectable minifig line up.

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By in United Kingdom,

Does anyone know enough about football tactics to explain what is going on on the tactical board? Only 2 of the 11 blue team members are on the field and the yellow team have a professional looking defensive line but the forwards are very oddly grouped. Is the red dot the ball or the ref?

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By in Germany,

hello
i have some dfb minifigs double.
if your are from uk u can contact me, a friend fly twice a week to london and can send them to you.

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By in Australia,

I like the idea of these (and I guess I want them just because they're collectable minifigs and you have to collect all of them!), and I did track down a set of the Olympic figures from a few years ago ... but I don't like the designs. They're over-done, I mean, the lines on their faces make them all look about three hundred years old. Add to that the fact that the series is only available in select places in Europe, and the cost of finding them online will be substantial, and I just couldn't be bothered. It reaches the point where it's just too much effort for very little return, so, meh.

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By in Australia,

I like that there are collectable minifigures that are both hard to get *and* not interesting to lots of people. To me it means that AFOLs will start to relax about exclusives and resellers because they won't bother trying to buy these. We will realise that we don't have to collect every single figure to enjoy our Lego.

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By in United States,

@ROTJ actually, that is half correct. when i saw him he was both number 11, but sometimes he changed apparently

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By in Canada,

Would love to see them do some other sports figures from basketball, baseball and football. Perhaps others sports as well.

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By in Czech Republic,

It would be very interesting for me to include actual photos of the players as a comparison.

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By in United Kingdom,

They look fantastic, but since France is hosting the competition shouldn't it have been the French National team that got the Lego treatment for the Euro 2016 competition? I know a lot of kids and AFOL's that would have bought England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland Lego Minifigures and Lego have some fantastic soccer sets released years ago!

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By in United Kingdom,

Sold Out at all LEGO S@H after only a few hours?! What about stores across Europe. Will these figures be sold out in physical stores almost as fast?

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By in Australia,

LEGO would be mad not to replicate teams from their major markets around the world for a lead up to the World Cup.

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By in Germany,

Just bought a full case yesterday! Time for a little unpacking :)

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By in United States,

PLEASE! PPLLEEAASSEE! LEGO I'M BEGGING YOU! Make a LEGO Star Wars CMF line w/ highly detailed characters!

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By in Australia,

While I couldn't care less about football, or just about any sport for that matter, I certainly do care for such a great range of new face prints. I find all too often that I just don't have enough variety.

Too bad I live in Australia, and will never be able to get my hands on these at a reasonable price, but I certainly appreciate that they exist

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By in United States,

I like the variety of facial prints and hair pieces. This would be a great reason to bring my soccer set from years back out of storage. I don't like the hands, though. They look defective with those holes/dimples.

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By in United Kingdom,

Those dimples are also on the Disney CMFs - my Stitch has them. Checked the Emett poly bag figure, mine has them. And a police minifigure from a City set - he's got them. So doesn't seem to be new, just more noticeable on these photos?

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By in Sweden,

if you're planning on using these figures for something else than what they are, you're probably just gonna use the hair and the head, but i really wan't Özil, because of that hair! Superman has it, and now, an easier way to get it! I wanted it for All New Doctor Strange.

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By in United States,

The only only change I would make is to have green bases--it would look like grass and provide a nice contrast to the black and white uniforms.

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By in United States,

"LEGO has never attempted to recreate so many real people before, instead representing movie or comic book characters as minifigures". I'd dispute this a bit — the NBA minifigures from 2003 included 24 real-world basketball players. But it's been a good thirteen years since then, so getting this many real people again is still a big change!

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By in United Kingdom,

@Aanchir - That is true, although I think those were caricatures of their real subjects whereas these minifigures aim to be a more realistic representation.

A few people have commented on the dimpled hands. That is indicative of manufacture in China and has been a feature of Collectable Minifigures for a few series now, although it is particularly apparent on flesh hands and less so on the typical yellow.

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By in United States,

They look neat, I won't lie.

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By in Switzerland,

I have bought 4 complete boxes of it, as annouced earlier on Brickset, 3 complete series included. Here is in detail what I found inside the boxes (exactly the same content inside all 4 of them, shame...): 3x coach, 3x Player 1, 4x 2, 3x 4, 3x 5, 5x 6, 4x 7, 4x 8, 5x 9, 4x 13, 3x 17, 5x 18, 4x 19, 3x 20, 4x 21 & 3x 23.
Although I am not very much interested in football, I must admit that the series look very nice especially when displayed on a green plate. I wish they had made at least another football team so as to be able to display a match, a single team looks rather strange on its own in a Lego city.

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By in United Kingdom,

wheres robert huth and philip lahm? i do like some of the figs they have made though..

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By in United States,

Hair and bros.

Might be able to resell the torsos and legs.

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By in Switzerland,

It's good to use the faces for more variety in my lego city :)

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By in Czech Republic,

Just bought 5 packs :-) [Pilsen, Czech Republic].

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By in United Kingdom,

I personally don't see the point in just the German national team...

There is no rhyme or reason to it. They didn't invent football and they are not the host nations...
A player from each team in Euro 2016 would have been more appropriate and have a greater international appeal.

To me this is the most pointless CMF series.
I won't be looking out for them

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By in Netherlands,

Would like to have the spanish team of 2010 in this setup

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By in United Kingdom,

@alstba - Germany is the current football world champion and is one of LEGO's most valuable markets. Furthermore, a selection of minifigures from different teams would a licensing nightmare, although I agree that it would be very appealing.

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By in Denmark,

I'd be eager to collect these to go with our early 2000s Lego futbol sets were they from various clubs. But Germany alone: no thanks.

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By in United States,

I never got into football, despite me wanting to. I'll still buy some!

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By in United Kingdom,

@CapnRex101 I know they are the world cup holders but it's not the world cup this year or last year which are times one would expect them to appear for that reason.

I suppose it just took time to develop them and get all the legal side sorted.

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By in United States,

Yawn... I hope this doesn't start a trend for the CMF series.

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By in United Kingdom,

No longer available on the Lego site, and customer services have replied back saying they are not making anymore.... Limited edition it seems

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