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World Cup

  • June 21, 2014
  • • 20:00
  • • Estádio Governador Plácido Aderaldo Castelo, Fortaleza, Ceará
  • Referee: Sandro Meira Ricci
  • • Attendance: 59621
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Germany - Ghana Preview: Muller aiming to continue golden form against Black Stars

Germany - Ghana Preview: Muller aiming to continue golden form against Black Stars

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Joachim Low's men got off to the perfect start with a comprehensive thrashing of Portugal on Monday and will be hoping to carry on that momentum against the Africans

By Robin Bairner in Fortaleza

Following their stunning success over Portugal in their opening World Cup encounter, Germany will attempt to maintain their strong start in the competition against a Ghana team that went down late against the USA in their first match.

After Thomas Muller’s hat-trick earlier in the day had helped Joachim Low’s men to a formidable 4-0 success in their 100th World Cup finals match – a sign of intent if ever there was one – the Africans leaked goals early and late against the Americans. Inbetween times, they had been the dominant side, but Andre Ayew’s fine 82nd minute strike was not even enough to salvage a point.

Having lost out at the quarter-final stage in South Africa 2010, the Black Stars need two outstanding displays if they are to avoid an earlier exit this summer. During that campaign four years ago, they met the Germans in the group stage, with Mesut Ozil’s goal on the hour mark sufficient to consign them to a 1-0 loss.

Historically, both teams have performed well in the group stage of the competition. In both of their previous World Cup finals experiences, Ghana have managed to negotiate the opening round of the competition, while Germany, who have gone all the way on three previous occasions, have lost only one of their previous 19 group matches.

Key midfielder Michael Essien has been toiling with a toe injury for Akwasi Appiah’s side but is fit to start, while it is hoped that Majeed Waris, who enjoyed a successful conclusion on a personal level to the season with Valenciennes, will shake off an injury to feature.

Germany, meanwhile, have an injury concern in Mats Hummels, who went off during the Portugal clash, although it is hoped he will be fit to play. While Sami Khedira is fit and Jerome Boateng, whose brother Kevin-Prince will play for Ghana, is set to wear a splint following a thumb injury, Bastian Schweinsteiger will have to wait for his chance on the bench in all likelihood.

Low’s side have a strong stranglehold in their previous encounters with African opposition, having lost only one of their six matches, and with World Cup specialist Thomas Muller – boasting seven goals in his last four outings in the competition – and Miroslav Klose, who remains on the brink of equalling the tournament’s all-time record, in tow, they are favourites to push their opponents a little closer to the exit door.

Players to watch

T. Müller

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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While Miroslav Klose may break the record for World Cup finals goals in this competition, Thomas Muller has been hotly tipped to one day hold that honour after an explosive start to the tournament by scoring three times against Portugal. On this stage he averages more than a goal a game – eight in seven appearances – and is already well poised to defend the Golden Boot he won in South Africa.

K. Boateng

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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Kevin-Prince Boateng has a unique reason to shine against Germany, as his brother Jerome is on Joachim Low’s roster, while he played at Under-21 level for his adopted nation. He will be deployed in an offensive role, from which he is expected to provide an all-action partner to Asamoah Gyan in attack. The Schalke player may only have two goals in 14 internationals, but a whole lot more is expected of him in Brazil.

Editor's Prediction

Ghana may have a strong record in the group stage, but the formidable form Germany scored in dismissing Portugal so convincingly should not be overlooked. Joachim Low’s side have set the bar high, and as such should have too much firepower for their opponents on this occasion.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Germany

Ghana

Wins
2
1
0
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Germany DEU
Germany Germany
Draw
Ghana GHA
Ghana Ghana
65%
30%

Top 3 Predictions

Germany DEU
3 - 0
Ghana GHA
Germany DEU
4 - 0
Ghana GHA
Germany DEU
3 - 1
Ghana GHA

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