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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

2010 FIFA World Cup™ Semi-Final GERMANY vs SPAIN >>> Match Preview

Coach Spain : They humiliated England and Argentina
Coach Germany : PAIN 4 SPAIN

Germany manager Joachim Low described his side's 4-0 annihilation of Argentina in the quarter-finals as a "performance of champions" and in doing so made a statement of intent. His youthful German side are not just at these finals to gain valuable experience but to lift the trophy.
Their defeat of Argentina was the third time in five games that Germany scored four goals in a match - defeating Australia 4-0 in their opening group game and England 4-1 in the second round - and Die Mannschaft go into this match as the team in form. Low's side have developed a quick-flowing, counter-attacking style that has proved too hot to handle for more than one opponent.
The Germans have brought a breath of fresh air to tournament that has often been bogged down with defensive tactics and their attacking intent will pose a whole new set of problems for a Spanish side that is used to facing massed defences and looks vulnerable at the back.
While Germany were romping to a famous victory over Diego Maradona's previously unbeaten Argentina, the below par Spaniards fought out a 1-0 victory over Paraguay following a similarly attritional 1-0 win against Portugal in the second round. It's fair to say the Vicente Del Bosque's side are yet to hit the form that enabled them to win Euro 2008, coincidentally with a 1-0 win over Germany in Vienna, and the sorry sight of an out-of-sorts Fernando Torres is emblematic of that.
The subdued Liverpool striker has started the last four games for Spain since recovering from injury, but has been hauled off around the 60-minute mark in every match after failing to make an impact. It can be no coincidence that his exit against Paraguay coincided with an improvement for Spain and it would be no surprise if Del Bosque opted to start Fernando Llorente or Pedro instead.
It may be late in the day to start making unforced changes but something needs to be done or Spain, who will be playing in their first ever World Cup semi final, face the prospect of being swept aside by a German side high on confidence and talent. But Low must make a significant change of his own with man-of-the-moment Thomas Muller, who jointly leads Germany in both goals and assists, suspended. The Bayern Munich starlet will be a big miss.
Germany midfielder Sami Khedira is expected to play against Spain despite picking up a minor thigh injury in the win against Argentina. Thomas Mueller, who has been used on the right wing in South Africa misses the match through suspension.Back-up striker Cacau remains troubled by an abdominal muscle injury.
Germany player to watch: Bastian Schweinsteiger
Argentina singled out German midfielder Mesut Ozil for special treatment in their quarter-final clash and so Schweinsteiger assumed the role of creator-in-chief with devastating effect. The Bayern Munich star provided the assists for Germany's first and third goals and was imperious in midfield throughout the match. With Muller missing against Spain Schweinsteiger will again have to deliver a top notch box-to-box performance.
Spain coach Vicente del Bosque must decide whether to persist with misfiring striker Fernando Torres, who lasted less than an hour against Paraguay before being substituted. His replacement, Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas, hurt his shoulder after falling heavily and will be assessed by Spain’s medical team. Watching the Spanish pass the ball around and achieving little for long spells, one can't help think that they are living on borrowed time. In their last two games they have relied on late David Villa goals to dig them out of a hole, and have benefited from some reasonably...ahem...'favourable' refereeing calls. This is not to say their passage to the semi-final has been built on luck, but against the ruthless Germans, they are going to need plenty of fortune.
Spain player to watch: David Villa
It may be an obvious selection but Barcelona's new €40 million signing has carried Spain this far and all eyes will be on him as he attempts to do so once again. Villa has scored five of Spain's seven goals in South Africa and is well on the way to winning the Golden Boot. Already recognised as one of Europe's most fearsome strikers he is now making a substantial impact on the world stage.
In addition to their slick attacking play, the Spanish defence has been pretty damn tight. Only two goals conceded in their five games thus far is an excellent record, and Gerard Pique has been one of the quiet stars of the tournament. However, they'll have to be on their toes on Wednesday, given the counter-attacking threat facing them.
While Germany have been very impressive in the last two games, the Spanish will present a whole bunch of new problems. One of the ways in which the Germans battered England and Argentina was by controlling the midfield, if not in quantity then quality of possession, something that both sides allowed them to do rather easily. That won't happen with Spain, given that they actually have players who can retain the ball.
It will be fascinating to see Sergi Busquets and Xabi Alonso duking it out with Bastien Schweinsteiger and Sami Khedeira, while Xavi and Mesut Ozil vie in their own individual ways for creative control. One could argue that, while Schweinsteiger has been impressive, he hasn't been truly tested in the knock-out stages.
He will be on Wednesday.
Key battle: Miroslav Klose v Gerard Pique
Germany striker Klose has mustered more goals in this World Cup than he managed in the entire Bundesliga season and in doing so stands on the brink of making history. The often derided Bayern Munich forward has already overtaken Pele in the World Cup's all-time goalscoring charts with 14, and just one more will see him tied for first place with Ronaldo. Hoping to stop Klose will be Barcelona centre-back Pique, who had torrid time against Paraguay and resorted to hauling down opponent Oscar Cardozo. Fortunately Cardozo failed to score from the resulting penalty.

Voice of the fans
“Each match is a different story. Every team Spain have played against so far have defended, which is what teams who fear them do. It will be different against Germany though. There will be more space and whoever controls the midfield will have every chance of winning. This is going to be the game of the World Cup, the Final played one game early,”

Iker Casillas
Spain goalkeeper and captain.
We haven’t come this far to finish fourth. We are going to fight hard against Germany to reach the Final, which is our one and only objective. We’ve reached a landmark for Spanish football by getting past the quarter-finals, but we know the Germany match is the most important in our history, even more so than the EURO 2008 final in Austria,”
Germany goalkeeper Manuel NEUER
We want the Cup and nothing's gonna stop us now
These two sides both love to attack but while Spain have been stuttering, Germany have hit their stride and that could be the crucial difference. This is Euro 2008 finals reprise, back then 2 years ago Spain beat Germany 1:0, a minimal victory but enough to become champions. Today Germany is destroying everything in front of themselves, they have shown the most of all teams so far on WC2010. Spain simply did not perform so well as Germany, Fernando Torres did not score any goals yet but luckily David Villa is in great shape and scored 5 goals so they are here in semifinals with Germany and Villa competes for the best goalscorer.
Take GERMANY Level Ball No Hcp (Main Bet)
Take GERMANY WIN (Main Bet)
Take a DRAW (Small Fun Bet Coverage)

Odds Centre >>> www.asianbookie.com

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