After their Euro 2012 semi-final heartbreak at the hands of Italy, Germany get back into competitive football with a home fixture against international minnows from the Faroe Islands. Joachim Low’s side will be unconcerned about the Faroe Islands, having faced them twice in history and only conceding the one goal.
Germany were favourites to reach the final of this summer’s European Championships, but were undone by Mario Balotelli and Italy in the semi-final. That loss brought an end to their 15 match winning streak in competitive internationals and that was coupled with a recent friendly loss to Argentina. Low welcomes back some of his familiar faces for the game in Hannover, a fixture they are expected to win comfortably.
Experienced full-back Phillip Lahm, goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and new Arsenal striker Lukas Podolski are expected to return to the side. However, Podolski’s club teammate Per Mertesacker may have to settle for a place on the bench with central defence occupied by Holger Badstuber and Mats Hummels. There is no Bastian Schweinsteiger, who is still not fully fit, and Miroslav Klose will play in the absence of Mario Gomez, who has an ankle injury.
Faroe Islands are ranked 154th in the world and face second-placed Germany looking to provide a monumental upset. Lars Olsen’s side showed their competitive edge with a shock 2-0 win over Iceland in Euro 2012 qualifying, but know they will need a miracle to beat the Germans. In their last outing, the Faroese saw the score reversed against the Icelandic side and Olsen is expected to make a couple of changes.
Goalkeeper Jakup Mikkelsen is expected to be replaced by Gunnar Nielsen, formerly of Manchester City. Olsen has a decision at left back to choose between Erling Jacobsen and Pol Johannus Justinussen, but the rest of the side picks itself with former Newcastle United striker Joan Simun Edmundsson leading the line in a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Germany should walk over the Faroese with their superior talent pool and home advantage. Low would be disappointed if the Germans conceded and is expecting his side to start their qualification campaign for Brazil 2014 with a win and a healthy goal difference.
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