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About Alan:

Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer is the Premier League's all-time top scorer with 260 goals and a leading TV pundit from the BBC's flagship football programme Match of the Day. Euro '96 Golden Boot winner Alan will be sharing his thoughts on all things football every week throughout the 2016/17 season.

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Shearer says: “You always look forward to games against Germany”

England legend looks ahead to Wembley clash

I played twice against Germany during my international career with England. I won one and lost the other on penalties.

You always look forward to these games because they are one of the best teams in the world and there is a great rivalry on the pitch between these two nations.

I scored against them at Euro 96 and then scored a penalty in the shoot-out, while four years later I grabbed the winner in a 1-0 victory at Euro 2000.

The defeat in 1996 was a hard one to take as we were aware that if we were to get through to the final, we’d be facing Czech Republic. There were 10 perfect penalties, five from England and five from Germany and then unfortunately Gareth Southgate missed his penalty.

I had retired by 2001 but I remember watching England beating Germany 5-1 in what was a great occasion.

It is not often anyone puts five past Germany but to do so in their own back yard, it was just incredible and one of the great England performances that really sticks out over the last couple of decades.

Unfortunately we were well beaten by them in 2010 when they beat us 4-1 at the World Cup.

This is still an important game

The game this week is a friendly so there is not quite as much at stake, however, it is still important because of the rivalry.

Unfortunately there have been a lot of pull-outs. That always happens around friendlies and it will never change, even if you are playing Brazil and Germany, two of the best fixtures you can play in as an England player.

I always wanted to play in every single game for England regardless of whether it was a competitive game or not.

I am not suggesting for one minute that people are doing so because they are not interested, however, players and managers tend to lean on the side of caution if there is any doubt with it being a friendly.

It’s a good opportunity

This is a great chance for some of the players on the fringe of the starting team and squad to impress the manager.

Gareth has to look at the goalkeeping situation before next summer and give everybody a fair chance to earn the number one jersey.

There will also be players he is not 100% sure about that he can try in different positions so it will prove very useful for Gareth despite the withdrawals.