German quality to edge exuberant England in battle of Berlin
Holly Thackeray | March 25, 2016
Germany v England
- International friendly
- Saturday, March 25th
- Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
- Olympiastadion, Berlin
- Live on ITV 1
Hodgson takes young hopefuls to enemy turf
Easily one of the highlights of the international break, a match that can even make friendly fixture skeptics pause in anticipation, is England’s venture across the continent to face old foes Germany.
One of the most enthralling rivalries in football, as both ambitious nations warm-up for Euro 2016, should be a real spectacle in Berlin, as Roy Hodgson takes his Three Lions fledglings to spar with the world champions.
On home soil, the Germans have been beaten just once in their last seven scuffles, so make sense at an odds-on price of 8/13 for a morale-boosting victory.
In addition, Die Mannschaft have been downed in only one of their past four frays with England, scoring an impressive eight over those encounters.
Die Mannschaft defence a way in for England
Still, Germany are quite far from their unstoppable 2014 World Cup-winning vintage, having conceded in all of their past five outings, so look best to back at 27/10 to win and both teams score.
With injuries to key players on both sides, including sidelined skipper Bastian Schweinsteiger and ousted marksman Max Kruse for the Germans and Ryan Bertrand added to an already missing England contingent of captain Wayne Rooney, number one Joe Hart and Raheem Sterling, this clash could be a fairly open affair.
As Joachim Low struggles to solves his rearguard woes, Bayer Leverkusen centre back Jonathan Tah could make his bow, allowing England a chance to strike at his inexperience.
Coach Low certainly does not appear to be taking the tussle for granted, as he told press of England: “Ten matches, ten wins, 31 goals and only three conceded – that record in their European Championship qualification group says everything about the strength of the team.”
If you fancy the Three Lions instead, who have a mixed record against the elite recently, having succumbed to Spain but overcome France, then customers can snatch at a 9/2 price for an away win. Though, with both coaches still tinkering, a draw at 14/5 may be better value.
Kane to lead England attack
Rooney may be missing but, in Tottenham hitman Harry Kane, Hodgson has a talisman in-waiting for the new England era, with Kane’s play emphasising a young, hungry philosophy – a recipe which has already proven a success for Die Mannschaft.
With three in eight so far for the Three Lions, the pressure of playing in Berlin will be a huge test for Hodgson’s young hero, with Kane a superb 7/4 in the anytime market, or 6/1 to open the floodgates.
Kane’s talented Whie Hart Lane clubmates could also feature, as Spurs left back Danny Rose look set to capitalise by claiming a first cap due to the absence of Bertrand. Midfield sensation Dele Alli struck sublimely against France and is 11/2 to make an impact against another of England’s regional rivals.
Also in the squad, strikers Danny Welbeck (8/1 for the final say) and Daniel Sturridge both have points to prove and will be challenging lethal Leicester City forward Jamie Vardy for minutes. Should you also fancy a little drama to occur in this duel, England can be backed at a tempting 10/1 to take a half-time lead but fail to win…
German goal machine eyeing England scalp
While, Germany’s reputation for being cold and clinical in front of net may owe more than a little to national stereotypes, but Die Mannschaft do have a raft of ruthless frontmen that should see them edge a young England, with back-up stopper Fraser Forster likely between the sticks.
One of those such sharpshooters, Bayern Munich goal machine Thomas Muller, recently stated ominously: “We want to give the world something to write home about.”
“Win or lose, it doesn’t have anything to do with Euro 2016 at the end of the day, but it’s important to look good against opposition like this.”
Menacing Muller has hit four for Low’s lads in his last five, making the Munich man an enticing 5/1 to be first on the scoresheet, or 7/1 to sniff out a brace or better, having already dispatched a memorable double against the English.
Pure poacher Mario Gomez (5/4 to punish England last) and wily wingman Marco Reus (6/4 anytime) could be another pair of attacking aces for the hosts, who boast an abundance of forward thinkers jostling for the starting XI.
With Euro squads far from cemented, eager eyes will be watching this testing tussle with much interest, as the superstar players on show seek to prove themselves amid heated competition…