Neuer brushes off injuries ahead of Portugal opener

15 June 2014 04:46

Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer insists an injury-hit build-up has not affected Germany ahead of their World Cup opener against Portugal on Monday in Salvador.

Germany have endured a heavily disrupted run-up to Brazil 2014 with midfielders Lars Bender and Marco Reus ruled out by injury.

Key players Philipp Lahm (ankle), Bastian Schweinsteiger (tendinitis of the knee) and Neuer (right shoulder) also picked up injuries at the end of the domestic season.

And Real Madrid midfielder Sami Khedira only returned in May after spending six months on the sidelines with a knee injury.

After intensive treatment, the quartet are all available to face Cristiano Ronaldo-led Portugal in Monday's mouth-watering clash and Neuer says they are ready.

"Those are things which are part of football, nobody wants to be injured, but it has affected our leading players," he said.

"We weren't always available, but we were constantly attached to the national side.

"We all came together in the final few training sessions and the most important thing is that the German team which plays will be 100 percent fit."

Neuer injured his shoulder in Bayern Munich's German Cup final win over Borussia Dortmund on May 17, but insists he now has full movement in the joint.

"I feel well and fit, I have no limitations whatsoever and I have trained fully, I feel upbeat," said the 28-year-old.

Neuer said Monday's opening Group G clash at Arena Fonte Nova is too close to call with Ghana and the United States also awaiting the Germans.

"We know we are facing a strong opponent who have been successful in recent years, it's almost like a final," he said.

Source: AFP