Placed firmly at the top of Group D ahead of Germany, Serbia and Australia, Ghana are surely one the stories of the tournament so far. But despite their successive 1-0 wins, they could easily find themselves knocked out of the competition if they don’t at least get a draw against strongly favored Germany. It all started so well for Germany against Australia. Their 4-0 victory over the Socceroos seemed to mark Germany’s intent to claim the World Cup prize. Defeat to Serbia has given this group a whole new complexion. Now Joachim Loew’s team will be focused on defeating Ghana and showing the world they can challenge for soccer’s ultimate prize once again.
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Germany vs Ghana Odds:
Out of all the African teams playing at South Africa 2010, Ghana have led the way in terms of their results. After successive 1-0 victories, Milovan Rajevac ‘s team top Group D and have a great chance of going through to the second round despite the task that lays before them in their final group game. Asamoah Gyan has again been cast in a starring role for Ghana, as was the case at the World Cup in Germany in 2006. The athletic striker has scored the team’s only two goals in the tournament and the German defenders will have their hands full with a striker whose pace and direct style of play can cause problems for any defender, especially those lacking pace. And if Per Mertesacker and Arne Friedrich take their places as expected in the heart of Germany’s defense, Gyan will have the beating of the tall central defenders for speed if he gets the service.
Trying to provide that service for Gyan will be Prince Tagoe from the left and Kevin-Prince Boeteng from the right of an attacking diamond for Ghana. Both Tagoe and Boeteng were guilty of missing several opportunities against Australia and despite their obvious talent with the ball, they will have to show more assured finishing if they wish to take the pressure off Gyan and help Ghana become the only African team to progress into the knockout stages of this competition. Germany are not a team that will not allow Ghana to get away with missed opportunities.
The loss to Serbia has dented German pride and given Germany’s rivals for the World Cup trophy hope that they might not be the team that they’re humiliation of Australia suggested they would be. However, in the Serbia game, it’s important to remember that Germany played 50 minutes with ten men after striker Miroslav Klose was sent off in the 37th minute by an overly officious referee. And even despite being down to ten men against a well-drilled Serbia team, Joachim Loew’s men had multiple opportunities to draw or even win the game. In terms of chances missed, Lukas Podolski was the main culprit, missing a penalty and spurning several chances directly in front of goal when it seemed easier to score.
Although Germany Coach Joachim Loew has several first team players on yellow cards going into the game against Ghana, there should be little change in the starting line up. Brazilian-born Cacau will replace the suspended goal-poacher Klose but otherwise Loew will look to the familiar players to do the job. Mesut Ozil is the player to watch out for. At the beginning of every move, German players will immediately focus on ways to get the ball to his left foot, as he’s capable of both threading passes through tight spaces and dribbling with the ball at speed. And the fiery Lukas Podolski will now have a point to prove after his horror show against Serbia so Ghana can expect to face a very motivated and focused Germany forward line.
While the Germany central defense will be vulnerable to the pace of the likes of Prince Tagoe and Asamoah Gyan, their covering full backs, Philpp Lahm and Holger Badstuber, are well-equipped to deal with Ghana’s speedy forwards. If they allow Germany to take control of possession early on in the game, Ghana will be in for the same treatment that Joachim Loew’s men dished out to Australia. But with so much riding on this one, it’s expected to be a nervous affair where one moment of action, whether magic or mistake, could settle the score.
Germany vs Ghana Prediction: Germany 2-1 Ghana.
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