‘Little final’ small consolation for Germany, UruguayJuly 9th, 2010 - 5:06 pm ICT by IANS
Johannesburg, July 9 (DPA) Germany and Uruguay will look to raise themselves for one last game Saturday when they face off in the playoff for third place in the World Cup football at Port Elizabeth’s Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
Both sides are downcast after missing out on a place in Sunday’s World Cup final at Soccer City but have a chance to finish their sojourn in South Africa on a high note.
Germany will find it particularly difficult to motivate themselves after Wednesday’s 1-0 defeat to European champions Spain consigned the Mannschaft to a second World Cup semi-final defeat in succession.
However, while the 3-1 victory over Portugal in Stuttgart four years ago was viewed as a celebration by the home fans, this time around the atmosphere around what the Germans call the “little final” is more funereal.
Unlike in 2006, there will be no parade in Berlin when the tournament ends. Team captain Philipp Lahm said a potential third-place bronze medal was nothing to celebrate.
“This team had a higher goal than ending up playing for third place,” said the Bayern Munich defender ahead of Germany’s record fifth appearance in a third-place match.
The two countries met at this stage of the World Cup once before, in 1970, when Helmut Schoen’s Germany prevailed 1-0. Uruguay’s sole competitive victory in nine attempts against Germany came at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics, the South Americans winning 4-1.
If Uruguay are to end their 82-year wait for a victory against Germany, they might have to do so without captain Diego Lugano and Diego Forlan, who are both struggling to recover in time.
Lugano missed the 3-2 semi-final defeat to the Netherlands with a thigh strain while Forlan was substituted shortly before the end of the game against the Dutch.
However, coach Oscar Tabarez has Luis Suarez and Jorge Fucile available for selection, who served one-match bans.
“It will be a difficult game,” said Tabarez. “Finishing fourth is not the same as third. We’ll go into the game with the same engagement and passion as we did against Holland.”
Germany coach Joachim Loew has a doubt over striker Miroslav Klose, who is suffering from a back problem.
The 32-year-old is one player desperate to play as he needs just one more goal to equal Brazilian striker Ronaldo’s 15-goal World Cup record.
Midfielder Sami Khedira and Lahm have both recovered from knocks while Loew is expected to give run outs to the four German players who have yet to feature.
“That would be simply a reward for their hard work,” said assistant coach Hansi Flick.
- Germany take third place with 3-2 victory against Uruguay (Second Lead) - Jul 11, 2010
- Germany take third place with 3-2 victory against Uruguay (Roundup) - Jul 11, 2010
- Uruguay must shed sorrow of defeat for playoff: Tabarez - Jul 07, 2010
- Uruguay end Ghana fairy tale, reach semis (Roundup) - Jul 03, 2010
- Germany revamps squad for Uruguay game - Jul 11, 2010
- Uruguay end African fairy tale, earn spot in semis (Lead) - Jul 03, 2010
- Spain outclass Germany to reach World Cup final (Third lead, changing dateline) - Jul 08, 2010
- Dutch reach World Cup final; captaincy row roils Germans (Second Lead) - Jul 07, 2010
- Uruguay and South Korea eye World Cup glory - Jun 25, 2010
- Forlan becomes highest scorer for Uruguay - Oct 13, 2011
- Uruguay represented Latin America with dignity: Bolivian president - Jul 12, 2010
- Germans quietly happy about third place at World Cup - Jul 11, 2010
- Forlan double sends South Africa close to World Cup exit - Jun 17, 2010
- Uruguay beat South Korea 2-1 to reach quarter-finals (Lead) - Jun 26, 2010
- Uruguay hoping for a repeat of history (Group A team profile) - May 26, 2010
Tags: bronze medal, diego forlan, diego lugano, european champions, face off, fifth appearance, funereal, helmut schoen, high note, home fans, last game, luis suarez, mandela bay, nelson mandela, philipp lahm, port elizabeth, small consolation, soccer city, thigh strain, world cup football