Warsaw: Lukas Podolski has warned Poland that if they set up a Euro 2012 quarter-final clash with Germany, "they will lose".
Having been born in Gliwice, the Arsenal-bound attacker has strong emotional ties with the tournament co-hosts and he is desperate to see Franciszek Smuda`s men progress to the knockout stages.
However, while Podolski freely admits that facing the land of his birth in Gdansk in the last eight would be a "special moment" for him, he insists that he would be just as ruthless as he was at Euro 2008, when he netted both goals in a 2-0 win over the Poles in the group stages.
"I will watch the Poland game against Czech Republic [Saturday] and have my fingers crossed for them, but if we play against them in the quarter-finals, they will lose," the 27-year-old declared.
Podolski`s more immediate concern, though, is helping Germany seal their place in the knockout stages by getting something out of their final fixture in Group B, against Denmark.
Sunday`s game in Lviv will be his 100th appearance for his country, but Podolski insists that while he is proud of having reached such a milestone at such a young age, he played down the significance of the achievement.
"I feel very comfortable in the German team and I hope it will go on like this," he explained. "I am very proud of myself but the statistics do not mean that much to me. In my career, I have other goals."
Indeed, Podolski is preoccupied with upping his game after two relatively quiet showings against Portugal and Netherlands.
"I expect a lot from myself and will do more offensively," he promised.
Germany`s meeting with the Danes is scheduled to kick off at 20:45CET on Sunday.
First Published: Friday, June 15, 2012, 20:07