Germany `duty`-bound to beat Irish in Euro campaign
Germany midfielder Julian Draxler says the world champions see it as their `duty` to beat Ireland on Tuesday to get their Euro 2016 qualification campaign back on track.
Munich: Germany midfielder Julian Draxler says the world champions see it as their `duty` to beat Ireland on Tuesday to get their Euro 2016 qualification campaign back on track.
Just three months after lifting their fourth World Cup title, Germany host the Irish in Gelsenkirchen desperate for a win after Saturday`s shock 2-0 defeat to Poland in Warsaw.
The result left the Germans fourth in Group D with Ireland second to Poland on goal difference after crushing minnows Gibraltar 7-0 in Dublin on Saturday after captain Robbie Keane scored a hat-trick inside 12 minutes.
Martin O`Neill`s Ireland are chasing their first win over Germany in 20 years, but Draxler said there is a determined air in the German squad to make amends after Warsaw.
"The 2-0 defeat hurt. We see it as our duty to get the rudder back on course," said the 21-year-old, who is vying with Lukas Podolski for a place on the left wing.
"Being world champions doesn`t mean being unbeatable."
And as Germany`s goalkeeper and stand-in captain Manuel Neuer put it: "Everyone wants to beat the world champions".
Injuries and retirements have robbed Joachim Loew of experience in key positions since Brazil.
The flow of goals has dropped since veteran goalscorer Miroslav Klose hung up his boots after the World Cup and the calming influence of retired defenders Philipp Lahm and Per Mertesacker is also missing.
Midfielders Bastian Schweinsteiger and Sami Khedira are injured and Germany are vulnerable on the flanks where full-backs Erik Durm and Antonio Rudiger have just seven caps between them.
Finishing is the Germans main preoccupation having failed to score in Warsaw despite 28 shots on goal and the world champions are desperate for both points and goals against Ireland.
"It`s the sign of a top team when they take their chances with ice-cold finishing. We need to get back to that," said team manager Oliver Bierhoff.