thumbnail Hello,

The Arsenal-bound attacker insists that Die Mannschaft will nullify the threat posed by the Real Madrid ace with controlled aggression and 'tough tackling'

GERMANY
GROUP A
HOW THEY QUALIFIED
P
PTS
 GERMANY 10 30
 TURKEY 10 17
 BELGIUM 10 15
 AUSTRIA 10 12
 AZERBAIJAN 10 7
 KAZAKHSTAN 10 4

Lukas Podolski has acknowledged that Cristiano Ronaldo is "one of the best in the world", but insists the Portugal star will not prevent Germany from opening their assault on Euro 2012 with a 2-0 victory in Lviv on Saturday evening.

The Real Madrid forward has spoken this week of his faith in his country's chances of emerging from the Group B, which also features Netherlands and Denmark, and is confident that the Seleccao can upset Die Mannschaft.

However, Podolski has dismissed Portugal's hopes of springing a surprise, claiming that Germany know just how to contain the Iberians' principal attacking threat.

"What Ronaldo is planning for Saturday is not important," the Arsenal-bound attacker told Bild.

"He is one of the best in the world, but we have done well in recent games against Portugal. We'll disturb him aggressively, entangle him with tough tackling.

"One thing is clear: we have enough players with great potential. Germany will win 2-0 against Portugal!"

With co-hosts Poland positioned in Group A, there is a chance that Germany could end up facing the land of Podolski's birth in the quarter-finals. However, he insists that there would be no mixed emotions for him should that come to pass.
DOUBLE DELIGHT FOR POLDI
Germany to win Euro 2012 and Lukas Podolski to be the tournament top scorer is 40/1 with Paddy Power.

"We will do everything possible to defeat the Poles," he declared. "A game against Germany must be their last stop."

Meanwhile, Bastian Schweinsteiger has declared himself fit to face the Portuguese, despite sitting out his country's final warm-up fixture against Israel, and Podolski admits that the Bayern Munich man's availability is a massive boost for Joachim Low's side.

"He's very important," the 27-year-old continued. "Unfortunately, he has had niggling injuries in the last few months. Now we have to see that he's fit on Saturday and helps us beat Portugal."

Germany's eagerly-awaited meeting with Paulo Bento's men is scheduled to get under way at 20:45CET on June 9.

Related

From the web