Germany - Faroe Islands Preview: Joachim Low's side start again after Euro heartbreak
The hosts are playing in their first competitive game since their bid for Continental glory was ended by Italy, and will look to get back to winning ways after a torrid summer
By Enis Koylu
Lahm, Hummels, Badstuber, Schmelzer
Muller, Ozil, Podolski
Naes, Baldvinsson, Faero, Jacobsen
Elttor, Holst, Udsen
Joachim Low will be able to welcome back several familiar faces after naming a much-changed side for their recent friendly loss to Argentina. Philipp Lahm returns, but will play at right-back as opposed to left-back, with Marcel Schmelzer keeping his place on the left-hand side of defence and Jerome Boateng dropping to the bench.
Manuel Neuer will certainly come in for Ron-Robert Zieler in goal, while Lukas Podolski is likely to reclaim his spot on the left wing, but another returning player, Per Mertesacker, will find his path to a centre-back berth blocked by Holger Badstuber and Mats Hummels, whose partnership continues to blossom.
However, there is no return for the unfit Bastian Schweinsteiger, leaving Toni Kroos to continue alongside Sami Khedira in the deep-lying midfield positions, while Miroslav Klose will retain his place up front in light of Mario Gomez's ankle injury.
Faroe Islands, meanwhile, are expected to make a couple of changes to the side that lost 2-0 to Nordic rivals Iceland in a friendly in August. Ageing goalkeeper Jakup Mikkelsen should make way for the younger Gunnar Nielsen.
Right-back Jonas Tor Naes and centre-backs Rogvi Baldvinsson and Odmar Faero should fill in at centre-back, but Lars Olsen has to make a choice between Erling Jacobsen and Pol Johannus Justinussen for the berth on the left side of defence.
Captain Frodi Benjaminsen and Hallur Hansson will form a shield in front of the defence, with Simun Samuelsen, Christian Holst and Daniel Udsen playing behind Joan Simun Edmundsson, with Hjalgrim Elttor confined to a place on the bench.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Germany qualified for Euro 2012 with 10 wins from as many matches. Their last defeat in qualifying for a major tournament came in October 2007.
- Joachim Low's side's 2-1 defeat to Italy in the semi-final of the Poland and Ukraine tournament brought an end to their world record 15-match winning streak in competitive internationals.
- Miroslav Klose (pictured, right) is just four strikes away from equalling Gerd Muller's record of 68 international goals. However, he is 28 caps off Lothar Matthaus' appearance record.
- Faroe Islands have played die Nationalmannschaft just twice in their history, losing both encounters and scoring only one goal.
- However, their coach, Lars Olsen, was the captain of the Denmark team that defied the odds to beat the Germans 2-0 in the Euro 1992 final.
- The Nordic minnows have won just four competitive international games since the turn of the millennium.
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Top 3 Predictions
Germany 8-0 Faroe Islands
- 26.89 %
Germany 5-0 Faroe Islands
- 15.68 %
Germany 4-0 Faroe Islands
- 13.38 %
|World Cup Qualifying - UEFA (WCQ)||Sep 10, 2013||Faroe Islands 0 - Germany 3|
|World Cup Qualifying - UEFA (WCQ)||Sep 7, 2012||Germany 3 - Faroe Islands 0|
|Nov 19, 2013||England 0 - Germany 1||FR|
|Nov 15, 2013||Italy 1 - Germany 1||FR|
|Oct 15, 2013||Sweden 3 - Germany 5||WCQ|
|Oct 11, 2013||Germany 3 - Ireland 0||WCQ|
|Sep 10, 2013||Faroe Islands 0 - Germany 3||WCQ|
|-||Marc-Andre ter Stegen||Goalkeeper|
|6||Jónas Tór Næs||Defender|
|-||Pól Jóhannus Justinussen||Defender|
|10||Christian Lamhauge Holst||Striker|
|-||Kaj Leo í Bartalsstovu|
With Joachim Low finally seeming to have given up on the error-prone Jerome Boateng, a huge opportunity awaits for Marcel Schmelzer. He seems to have ousted Dennis Aogo as the specialist left-back in the former Stuttgart coach's squad, and with Philipp Lahm thriving on the right-hand side of defence for Bayern Munich, the Dortmund man really has a chance to establish himself in the national side ahead of the 2014 World Cup.
If there's one guarantee going into this game, it's that the Faroe Islands goalkeeper Gunnar Nielsen is going to have a busy, busy night. Germany's front line, Mesut Ozil aside, have all started the new season in excellent form for their clubs this season, and Germany will be all the more keen to stake their credentials as World Cup winners for 2014. If the Faroe Islands are to come away from this with any credibility to their name, they will need the Manchester City sticksman to be on top form.
Not only there is an obvious gulf in quality between these two teams, but after a torrid end to their Euro 2012 campaign and criticism-filled summer, Joachim Low's men will be eager to prove their doubters wrong and record a convincing victory over their considerably-less-illustrious opponents on Friday. The likes of Thomas Muller, Lukas Podolski, Mesut Ozil and Toni Kroos all have a point to prove to varying reasons, while Miroslav Klose is edging towards Gerd Muller's record tally of 68 international goals.
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed