Sunday, June 24, 2018

Loew plots ways to stop Pirlo

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 26 Jun 2012


Germany coach Joachim Loew does not believe his team should ‘man-mark’ Andrea Pirlo during their Euro 2012 semi-final against Italy.

Loew has argued that assigning one player to look after Pirlo is ‘useless’ and would prefer Germany to focus on their own game rather than worry about the opposition.

“(Pirlo) is an outstanding footballer and a brilliant strategist,” Loew said on Tuesday.

“Man-marking is useless with him because he drops deep so often.

“(Italy can play) 3-5-2 or 4-4-2.

“We have to familiarise and prepare for both systems (but) we want to keep our own rhythm.”

Loew wants to force Italy to react during Thursday’s semi-final.

“We must bring our own game to the field and not cater to our opponent,” the 52-year-old said.

While Bastian Schweinsteiger is struggling for fitness after Germany’s quarter-final win over Greece, Loew has declared that the Bayern Munich man will be fine, although he did add that no player will start against Italy unless they are completely fit.

“No player will play if he is only 95 percent fit,” Loew said.

“(Schweinsteiger) had some problems with his passes against Greece but he is self-critical.

“He has trained hard and I maintain that all players are fit to play.

“He is very confident and we will need him because he is important.”

Meanwhile, Germany striker Miroslav Klose has no expectations about starting against Italy after his shock inclusion against Greece.

Klose scored in Germany’s 4-2 quarter-final victory after replacing Mario Gomez, who had scored three goals in the group stage of Euro 2012, in the starting 11.

“I am preparing as if I would start,” Klose said.

“We have two great forwards and the coach has shown that he has made the right selections lately.”


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