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Loew looks for off-beat Germans to find rhythm

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11 Oct 2012 18:17:40

Loew looks for off-beat Germans to find rhythm

Coach Joachim Loew has said he wants to see more stability and rhythm when Germany take on the Republic of Ireland in Friday's World Cup qualifier.

Germany were unimpressive in September's opening qualifiers as a 3-0 win at home to Faroe Islands was followed by a narrow 2-1 win over Austria in Vienna when the defence creaked and the attack failed to finish their chances.

"I hope all the players will have a better game rhythm than in our last match," he said.

"We have worked on a few things in the last few days: our defence, getting more structure in our game and holding positions.

"The players have made a good impression and I am confident we will do better than against Austria."

Loew will persevere with left-back Marcel Schmelzer, but admits a dearth of decent defenders leaves Germany vulnerable and said he expects his players to "fight for 90 minutes" against the Irish.

Schmelzer is set to start at left-back at Dublin's Aviva Stadium, but after a poor performance against Austria, Loew has said he is hamstrung by a lack of alternatives.

"He did not play well against Austria," admitted Loew after Schmelzer had allowed Austria's Marko Arnautovic to run riot.

"There aren't many alternatives around at the present, so we have to work with Marcel Schmelzer for the next two, three, four, five months.

"We will continue to work with him - and look at creating a few alternatives."

Loew said a lack of viable options from the German league has affected his choices for the national side.

"In the Bundesliga, there are very few options at left back and I can't make them out of thin air," said the 52-year-old.

"Some players have to get used to the speed, momentum and pressure of international football."

With right-back and captain Philipp Lahm suspended, Loew is likely to use Bayern Munich's Jerome Boateng on the right side of defence with Arsenal's Per Mertesacker and Bayern's Holger Badstuber at centre-back.

Since Germany's semi-final exit from Euro 2012 at the hands of Italy in June, the unconvincing defence has been at the centre of debate in the German media.

"You can bet that we will produce a defence," said Loew tongue-in-cheek.


AFP

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