Manuel Neuer aims to end a disappointing 2011-12 campaign on a high by guiding Germany to glory at the European Championship. The shot stopper had to settle for second spot in the Bundesliga this season with Bayern Munich, and lost the Champions League and DFB-Pokal finals against Chelsea and Borussia Dortmund respectively. “I don’t have any fear that I will finish as runner-up once more. It simply won’t happen,” the 26-year-old was quoted as saying by Bild.
“It’s very clear. The entire team wants to stay in the tournament until the final, and then win the European title.” Neuer has so far conceded twice in three encounters, and the former Schalke man is dreaming of keeping three more clean sheets in the remaining rounds of the tournament.
“It’s the wish of the German fans that I don’t concede any more in the remainder of the Euros, and I share that dream. One can’t just assume that it will indeed happen, though. But I will do my utmost to achieve it.”
The Germans are bidding to win a fourth European title and having won their three pool matches against Holland, Portugal and Denmark, plus all ten qualifiers en route to the final, the Greeks start as underdogs.
The David verses Goliath clash has added spice between two nations at the heart of the Eurozone financial crisis with one Greek paper demanding “Bring us Merkel!” after their team reached the knock-out phase.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who will attend the match, has provoked anger in Greece for leading calls on Athens to impose tough austerity measures in return for financial assistance from Germany to help to bring down debt.