Oliver Bierhoff has urged Germany not to approach any match with arrogance after their Euro 2012 semi-final loss to Italy.
Pre-tournament favourites Germany suffered a disappointing 2-1 loss to surprise package Italy at the UEFA competition in Poland and Ukraine.
Nevertheless, national team manager Bierhoff feels there is plenty of reason for optimism going into the qualifying campaign for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
“We must be careful not to show any arrogance,” he told the Suddeutsche Zeitung.
“It was striking that we found it hard to take advantage of our chances to score. We lacked cleverness.
“Having said that, none of the players took it easy; they were all hungry for the title.
“Six weeks before (the tournament), the feeling was that everything was going well.
“There was praise for our dynamism, the leadership and the power of our side – after one game, all of that has been wiped out.
“Because our qualification was outstanding, and because of the friendly victories over Netherlands and Brazil, perhaps our heads got too big.”
Bierhoff defended the role played by Germany coach Joachim Loew, who has come under fire following the team’s underwhelming showing against Italy.
“Loew will analyse the game against Italy, and he will find the best way to go forward,” he said.
“I don’t worry. It’s a strength of Jogi’s that he makes unpopular decisions.”