The last time Germany won the World Cup, Lothar Matthaus led the team to the podium in Italy. Germany will be playing the first semi-final against the hosts Brazil today, but the fact that Brazil be without its poster-boy Neymar in the match saddens Matthaus.
Matthaus, who featured in two World Cup finals against a top-form Diego Maradona, condemned the way Colombian Juan Zuniga kneed Neymar.
"Injury to Neymar comes as a shock to us. I did not like what I saw in the television replay. We (Germany) might have an advantage, though.
But I believe Joachim Low's team would have wanted to play against the best. And I wish Neymar all the best for his recovery. It will be a game between two big champions and it'll hopefully be a great football match," said Matthaus during a press conference.
Germany has changed their football style and it all started when one of Matthaus' World Champion colleague Jurgen Klinsmann took charge of the team for the 2006 World Cup. Matthaus, however, wants to stick to the tried and trusted methods.
"German teams have changed over the years. Before, we used to play at a very high technical level.
But beautiful football sometimes does not get you the desired result, which is why we have come close, very close to winning the World Cup in the last three editions, but could not win it (Germany has lost in the 2002 final and in semi-final of 2006 and 2010).
You have to win matches and the dirty matches. Low has made the changes this time around which I hope will instil the grit to win. In 1990 when I led the team, set pieces helped us win. That is what the current team should also focus on", said Matthaus.
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