Denmark - Germany Preview: Morten Olsen's side plot German upset in Group B decider
Despite two good performances at Euro 2012, the Danes must win their final group game against Joachim Low's high-fliers to book their place in the quarter-finals
By Karthick Arvinth
Jacobsen, Kjaer, Agger, S Poulsen
Kvist, J Poulsen
Mikkelsen, Eriksen, Krohn-Dehli
Bender, Hummels, Badstuber, Lahm
Muller, Ozil, Podolski
Denmark winger Dennis Rommedahl will miss Sunday's encounter with Group B leaders Germany in Lviv with a hamstring problem.
Tobias Mikkelsen, who replaced Rommedahl in the 3-2 defeat to Portugal, could be handed a start ahead of new Ajax signing Lasse Schone, while midfielder Niki Zimling (calf) is a doubt.
Germany boss Joachim Low will be forced into a defensive change to accommodate for the absence of Jerome Boateng, who is suspended after picking up his second booking of the tournament in the 2-1 win over the Netherlands.
The 52-year-old may opt to use Benedikt Howedes or midfielder Lars Bender at right-back, or, alternatively, he could switch captain Philipp Lahm to the right with Borussia Dortmund's Marcel Schmelzer given the nod in the opposite flank.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Denmark's record in 25 previous meetings with Germany is W8 D3 L14. However, they have not lost to the Germans in their last three encounters (W2 D1).
- Morten Olsen's men are guaranteed to progress to the quarter-finals if they beat their neighbours, though a draw will be sufficient if Portugal lose to Netherlands.
- Denmark have never lost a European Championship game after scoring first, winning six and drawing four.
- Simon Poulsen, William Kvist, Lars Jacobsen and Jakob Poulsen are a booking away from suspension.
- Germany's last competitive meeting with Denmark came at the final of Euro '92, which they lost 2-0 to hand the Danes their only major title to date.
- A draw would seal top spot in Group B for the Germans, but if they lose they could bow out if Portugal beat Netherlands.
- If he plays, Lukas Podolski (pictured right), 27, will earn his 100th cap for Germany, becoming die Mannschaft's seventh centurion after Thomas Hassler, Franz Beckenbauer, Jurgen Kohler, Jurgen Klinsmann, Lothar Mathaus and Miroslav Klose.
- Holger Badstuber will incur a ban with his next booking.
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Top 3 Predictions
Denmark 0-2 Germany
- 19.77 %
Denmark 0-3 Germany
- 17.26 %
Denmark 1-3 Germany
- 13.4 %
|Euro 2012 (EC)||Jun 17, 2012||Denmark 1 - Germany 2|
|International Friendlies (FR)||Aug 11, 2010||Denmark 2 - Germany 2|
|International Friendlies (FR)||Mar 28, 2007||Germany 0 - Denmark 1|
|Jun 11, 2013||Denmark 0 - Armenia 4||WCQ|
|Jun 5, 2013||Denmark 2 - Georgia 1||FR|
|Mar 26, 2013||Denmark 1 - Bulgaria 1||WCQ|
|Mar 22, 2013||Czech Rep. 0 - Denmark 3||WCQ|
|Feb 6, 2013||Macedonia FYR 3 - Denmark 0||FR|
|Returns:||Denmark £1510.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Draw £130.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Germany £15.71||Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets|
|5||Simon Busk Poulsen||Defender|
|7||William Kvist Jörgensen||Midfielder|
|-||Tobias Pilegaard Mikkelsen|
The Denmark skipper rarely put a foot wrong at the back in the opening game against the Dutch and was equally assured in the defeat to Portugal. A fine reader of the game, Agger will need to keep the dangerous Mario Gomez on a tight leash and deny him space in and around the penalty box.
A sublime double against the Netherlands took the Bayern Munich forward to three goals for the tournament, level with Croatia's Mario Mandzukic and Russia's Alan Dzagoev in the race for the Golden Boot. Remarkably, Gomez was in possession of the ball for a mere 18 seconds in the whole of the game against the Dutch, which goes to highlight the 26-year-old's impeccable timing and precision in front of goal.
Germany will back themselves to complete a clean sweep in the group stages and set up a quarter-final against the Group A runner-up close to their training base in Gdansk. Denmark cannot hope to outplay Low's side, and, unless they can win the mental battle and turn this into a dull and cagey affair, their tournament is likely to come to an end.