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TEAM NEWS: Gomez starts ahead of Klose in Portugal encounter

TEAM NEWS: Gomez starts ahead of Klose in Portugal encounter

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The Bayern Munich striker has been given the nod ahead of the Lazio veteran up front for Joachim Low's side, as Nani starts for Paulo Bento's men, despite worries over his fitness

Germany coach Joachim Low has chosen Mario Gomez ahead of Miroslav Klose to spearhead his team's attack for their Euro 2012 opener against Portugal.

There had been much conjecture as to which of the two strikers would start for their nation, but Low has given the Bayern Munich star the nod after a prolific season at club level.

Gomez's team-mate at club level, Jerome Boateng, will start at right-back, and Bastian Schweinsteiger is fit to play, despite missing die Mannschaft's warm-up friendly against Israel with a calf injury.

Finally, Mats Hummels and Holger Badstuber will play at the centre of defence, with Per Mertesacker dropping to the bench after missing the last three months of the domestic season with an ankle injury.

Meanwhile, there had been doubts as to whether Nani would be sufficiently fit start for Portugal, but will form part of an attacking triumvirate alongside Helder Postiga and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Three of the Paulo Bento's side, Pepe, Fabio Coentrao and Ronaldo were part of the team that were beaten on penalties by German giants Bayern Munich in the Champions League semi-finals.

Meanwhile, after the disappointing 3-1 friendly loss to Turkey, Miguel Veloso comes in to give the back four extra protection.

GERMANY (4-2-3-1)
: Neuer; Boateng, Hummels, Badstuber, Lahm, Khedira, Schweinsteiger; Muller, Ozil, Podolski; Gomez

Portugal (4-3-3): Rui Patricio; Joao Pereira, Pepe, Bruno Alves, Coentrao; Miguel Veloso, Moutinho, Meireles; Nani, Postiga, Ronaldo

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