Kickoff: 2am Tuesday 17June (AEST) Arena Fonte Nova, Salvador.
Germany face Portugal in game 13 of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The game will be played in the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador which is geographically located on the North East coast of Brazil. This game is a crucial fixture in what has been labelled the Group of Death with both Ghana and USA in the same group. Germany come into the game after a difficult preparation with several players pulling out (the most notable being Marco Reus) while their opponents Portugal have been bolstered by the recent return of Ronaldo. This is set up to be an early crucial fixture in determining who progresses too the knockout stages.
Head to Head: Germany: 9, Draw: 5, Portugal: 3.
Germany: Mesut Ozil. The tale of two contrasting players. One who has been in stunning club form and the other who has largely disappointed (particularly in the second half of the season). Mesut Ozil has a crucial role in the Germans chances for the tournament and if it wasn’t beforehand it is now. Given the most recent injury of Marco Reus, the pressure now falls at the feet of Ozil. He will line-up as the centre attacking midfield position. In the past Ozil has been one of the premier players for Germany and arguably was their player of the tournament in the previous edition and the question is, Can he recapture that form?
Portugal: Cristiano Ronaldo. Arguably the world’s best player will have a lot to prove in Brazil and what better place to start then an early fixture against one of the competitions favourites. Frankly however, I do hope he does pull through certain fitness concerns to play this game. If he does, there is no doubt that he is a positive influence on the Portugal dressing room. Club wise, he has been in top form leading Real Madrid to become the champions of Europe. However country wise at a world cup, Ronaldo has never lived up to his hype, largely disappointing at the previous world cup in 2010.
Prediction: For me, making a prediction is simple. Germany really should win but the unpredictable part is the margin. Germany undoubtedly have a better talent pool than their opponents and given the recent injuries this could give the players more confidence that they can retain their positions. Portugal on the other hand will be aiming to at least keep the score line respectable and if Ronaldo does play they could cause an upset. Germany 2-1.Google+