Germany vs England preview

March 20, 2017
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Old international rivals Germany and England will square off at Signal-Iduna Park on Wednesday evening as the two sides prepare for the remainder of their respective World Cup qualifying campaigns.

With qualifiers against Azerbaijan and Lithuania clearly the priority at the moment, it remains to be seen whether the two managers will field their strongest sides.

In spite of seeing several key men retire from international stage, Germany managed to reach the semis at the Euro 2016 finals, but were eventually beaten by hosts France.

The team were able to bounce back from the somewhat disappointing exit as they enjoyed a bright start to the new qualifying campaign.

Die Mannschaft haven’t conceded a single goal since the Euro 2016 finals, winning all four qualifiers in style, scoring 16 goals in the process, while keeping clean sheets in friendlies vs Finland (2-0) and Italy (0-0).

Therefore, Germany have got to be considered favourites to see off England in midweek and they can now be backed at 1.75 (3/4) at William Hill.

There were no major surprises in the squad for games vs England and Azerbaijan, although RB Leipzig forward Timo Werner is in line to win his first cap.

Lukas Podolski has been called to say goodbye to the national team, whereas Jerome Boateng continues to miss out as he battles an injury.

Bundesliga starlets Leon Goretzka, Max Meyer and Serge Gnabry have been added to the Under-21 side, whereas Leroy Sane and Antonio Rudiger return.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Neuer – Kimmich, Hummels, Mustafi, Hector – Khedira, Kroos – Muller, Ozil, Sane – Gomez.

The England national team continue to struggle on the biggest stage, having suffered yet another embarrassing exit from a major tournament, and a decent start to the 2018 World Cup qualifiers should not be overestimated.

Gareth Southgate did stabilise the squad following Big Sam’s departure, but there is a long way to go before the Three Lions can refer to themselves as one of Europe’s top sides.

Just like their next opponents, England haven’t conceded a single goal in four qualifiers, although their back line was breached in the 2-2 draw with Spain.

Two very late goals denied the Three Lions what would have been a morale-boosting victory, but they will have another chance to record one of those when they face Germany on Wednesday.

There have been some surprises in Gareth Southgate’s latest squad as 34-year-old Jermaine Defoe has been recalled, while youngsters Marcus Rashford, James Ward-Prowse and Nathan Redmond made the cut as well.

West Ham star Michael Antonio was forced to withdraw through injury, while Harry Kane, Wayne Rooney, Theo Walcott and Daniel Sturridge are out as well.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Hart – Clyne, Cahill, Stones, Rose – Henderson, Dier – Sterling, Alli, Lallana – Vardy.

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