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Eriksson backs England ahead of Germany clash

AFP/The Local · 25 Jun 2010, 16:01

Published: 25 Jun 2010 16:01 GMT+02:00

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The 62-year-old Swede, who is in charge of the Ivory Coast at the World Cup finals, said he will find a television in Nelspruit and watch his former team take on their World Cup nemesis.

"I saw England's match against Slovenia (the English won 1-0 to qualify for the second round) and I thought England played well," he said.

"I think they can beat Germany, it will be a huge game. I am going to look at that on TV."

Eriksson was in charge of two England World Cup campaigns in 2002 and 2006, but never succeeded in taking the side beyond the last eight, losing to eventual winners Brazil in 2002 and then to Portugal on penalties four years later.

Ivory Coast have slender hopes of making the last 16 as they must thrash North Korea later on Friday and hope that Brazil defeat Portugal convincingly if 'The Elephants' are to progress.

Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer meanwhile insists he will be ready to give England more World Cup heartache should Sunday's clash is decided by a penalty shoot-out.

Germany have won all four of their penalty shoot-outs at World Cup finals and the 24-year-old Neuer says he has no intention of seeing that record broken should the game with England be decided by the dreaded spot-kicks.

"We hope it won't get as far as that, but if it does, I will be ready," said the Schalke 04 shotstopper.

"As a goalkeeper you can only win at a penalty shoot-out as nothing is really expected of you, I never approach shoot-outs in a negative manner.

"I will prepare for it of course, we have some good penalty takers, but so do they, we just have to play the memory game."

Few England fans will need reminding of the heartbreak of Turin in the 1990 World Cup semi-final when Chris Waddle and Stuart Pearce both missed penalties as Germany won the shoot-out 4-3 on their way to winning the title.

Germany's amazing run of penalty shoot-out success started at the 1982 World Cup in Spain when they beat France 5-4 on spot-kicks in the semi-final, before losing the final to Italy.

They then beat hosts Mexico 4-1 in a quarter-final shoot-out at the 1986 World Cup on their way to losing the final 3-2 to Argentina.

Jens Lehmann was the goalkeeping hero in 2006 as hosts Germany beat Argentina 4-2 when the quarter-final was decided by a penalty shoot-out.

Germany went on to finish third.

Neuer has recent experience of a convincing victory over the English when he was in the Germany team which hammered their old rivals 4-0 in last year's European Under-21 Championships in Sweden.

Mesut Özil, one of Germany's rising stars at this World Cup, was England's chief tormentor that day scoring one of the goals, but Neuer says it will not be so easy in Bloemfontein this Sunday.

Story continues below…

"We played them twice in that tournament, we drew 1-1 with them in the group game, so we already know it will not be easy," said Neuer.

"Mesut Özil had a great day and he hit the target, but this will be a totally different match."

The average age of the German team is just under 25 and their lack of experience showed in the group stages here as they bounced back from the shock 1-0 defeat to Serbia with a nervy win over Ghana on Wednesday.

Neuer says now the Germans have reached the knock out stages, they need to make sure they give it all they have against England.

"We failed to score in the first half (against Ghana), so the pressure increased after the break," he said.

"Once we scored, the weight was off our shoulders, but now we need to put our foot on the pedal against England."

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

19:26 June 25, 2010 by Audrian
Both the English and German teams do not have good strikers. If any one of them win it will be a chance happening, as both are of the same standard. Eriksson's view, with a strong sentiment for the English side, cannot be trusted.
20:46 June 25, 2010 by Jes
I have always thought of Svennis as a gutless man . Now I know I am right . England beat Slovenia ( not Brazil) with a single goal. How can anyone say that they played well enough to be able to beat the Germans that look fresher and better organised ?
23:38 June 25, 2010 by zircon
Mr Eriksson also knows that England can be as hard as steel when it comes to e.g. the next stage.
10:21 June 26, 2010 by warriorwithin
World cup like world war 2. the french surrendered early, americans arrived at last minute, british left to fight germans!......swedes change stance to english after the germans started losing, but here i see their stance before itself!!!!!!!!!!!!!
10:55 June 26, 2010 by Jes

Before the sweat and tears had dried , Sven Ariksson was on telling the World that he was moving back to England. Apparently , he is setting up a new job. This kind of selfishness and insensitivity is what one can expect from a Swede . In Sweden its always "ME FIRST" !

Sven Ekiksson is no different from those Euoropeans who go to Africa for oil , diamonds etc. They don`t care what happens to the Africans afterwards .
14:43 June 26, 2010 by Cornelius Hamelberg
All I know is that Ghana is going to wallop the UsA
15:16 June 26, 2010 by Recon
"World cup like world war 2. the french surrendered early, americans arrived at last minute, british left to fight germans!......swedes change stance to english after the germans started losing, but here i see their stance before itself!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Ha,Ha Brilliant!!!

Come on England!
16:27 June 26, 2010 by steve_38
Or the England versus USA game went like this.

Kick off at 1939.

Americans show up at 1941 and calim victory at 1945

I will watch England v Germany but am not hopeful as usual the Germans are an excellent team and are very difficult to beat. I still remember the night we beat them 5-1.

Tomorrow I somehow dont think it will be like this. England have so far played terribly and have been lucky I hat to say it but its true.
23:21 June 26, 2010 by oasking
What else will someone who is looking forward to work with a team in the premier league says? I am sure if he had offers from Germany, I would have been saying the opposite.

I give this match to the Germans, the English team is over-rated. They also have some old players who shouldn't be in this world cup.
23:41 June 26, 2010 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Glory be to the Almighty!


Soccer Historians,

Our boys played oh! And so did the United States!

The Black Star Nation “with a Black Star in the centre representing the Freedom of Africa”:

In the annals of the history of Africa, to be noted in the Soccer Book of Glory:

““Then shall our names,

Familiar (in their mouth as) household words…..be in their flowing cups freshly remembered….

From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it shall be remembered - We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; “:

Richard Kingson

Hans Sarpei

John Pansil

Captain John Mensah

The indefatigable Samuel Inkoom

Jonathan Mensah

Anthony Annan

Andre Ayew

Kevin Prince Boateng

Asamoah Gyan

Kwajo Asamoah

Lee Addy

Sullay Muntari

Stephen Appiah



18:46 June 27, 2010 by Jes
4-1 for Germany .

Go clean your teeth svennis Eriksson !

One more proof that you don´t know football .
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