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Germany World Cup 2014 Preview

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Strong, powerful, determined; three words so often used to classically describe the German national side, but words that do not efficiently sum up Joachim Loew's squad for the 2014 World Cup.

Chock full of attacking subtlety, guile and imagination; this squad represents an evolution of styles in Germany, away from blunt force, and to sharp, rapier-like invention, typified by a cluster of fantastic young midfielders, all reaching the peak of their powers, who make this German side one of the betting favourites at Betfair.

The injection of Mesut Ozil, Marco Reus, Toni Kroos, Mario Gotze and Julian Draxler make Loew's one of the most affluent attacking squads at the tournament, and they are certainly not lacking in the defence.

Arsenal giant Per Mertesacker and Dortmund star Mats Hummels will sit in front of IFFHS Goalkeeper of the Year Manuel Neuer, with captain Philipp Lahm, Sami Khedira and all-rounder Bastian Schweinsteiger making this side brilliantly balanced.

Striker Miroslav Klose is rather a blast from the past up top, but one more goal from the 35-year-old and he will be the top ever scorer in World Cup history.

The Germans have finished in the top three in the last three World Cup Finals, and it would take a brave man to bet against them ending their 24 year wait for a fourth trophy win this summer in South America.

Key Info -

Manager: Joachim Loew
Captain: Philipp Lahm
World Cup Winners: 1954, 1974, 1990
World Cup Runners-Up: 1966, 1982, 1986, 2002

Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Roman Weidenfeller (Dortmund), Ron-Robert Zieler (Hanover)

Defenders: Jerome Boateng (Bayern Munich), Erik Durm (Dortmund), Kevin Grosskreutz (Dortmund), Benedikt Hoewedes (Schalke), Mats Hummels (Dortmund), Marcell Jansen (Hamburg), Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich), Per Mertesacker (Arsenal/ENG), Shkodran Mustafi (Sampdoria/ITA), Marcel Schmelzer (Dortmund).

Midfielders: Lars Bender (Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Schalke), Matthias Ginter (Friburg), Leon Goretzka (Schalke), Mario Goetze (Bayern Munich), Andre Hahn (Augsburg), Sami Khedira (Real Madrid/ESP), Toni Kroos (Bayern Munich), Max Meyer (Schalke), Thomas Mueller (Bayern Munich), Mesut Ozil (Arsenal/ENG), Lukas Podolski (Arsenal/ENG), Marco Reus (Dortmund), Andre Schurrle (Chelsea/ENG), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Bayern Munich)

Forwards: Miroslav Klose (Lazio/ITA), Kevin Volland (Hoffenheim)

World Cup 2014 Fixtures:

Germany vs Portugal, Monday 16 June, 17:00
Germany vs Ghana, Saturday 21st June 20:00
USA vs Germany, Thursday 26th June, 17:00

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