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Germany v Spain - Preview
Published : 07 Jul 2010 11:56:35
Tonight sees the second World Cup semi-final take place as Germany take on pre-tournament favourites Spain in Durban. The game, which is a rematch of the Euro 2008 final, sees two very contrasting sides face each other for a place in Sunday's final against the Netherlands.
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The Germans have been in prolific goal-scoring form so far, bagging thirteen goals in just five games. Their four goal hauls against Australia, England and Argentina have also made them the first team to score four or more goals in three different World Cup matches since Brazil in 1970.
Joachim Low's young side are proving to be a far cry from German sides of old, replacing strength and organisation with pace and skill. The mercurial Mesut Ozil has been in splendid form playing just behind top-scorer Miroslav Klose, while Bastien Schweinsteiger has been in excellent, particularly given the absence of his normal midfield partner Michael Ballack.
Low has the luxury of a fully-fit squad to pick from tonight as Sami Khedira, Arne Friedrich and Cacau have all recovered from minor injuries. However one player he will be without is Bayern Munich striker Thomas Mueller who is suspended.
Spain enter tonight's game on the back of a number of hard-fought victories during both the group and knockout stage. Having yet to produce their free-flowing best, Vicente Del Bosque's side will be well aware that they may need to improve their goal-scoring exploits if they are to overcome their free-scoring opponents.
New Barcelona striker David Villa has been in superb form with five goals to his name already although his strike partner Fernando Torres is still yet to find the net.
Del Bosque could be without Arsenal talisman Cesc Fabregas who is struggling with leg and shoulder injuries. Central defender Carles Puyol has recovered from blurred vision in order to start alongside Gerard Pique.