Wounded Germany look to rebound

| | Kochi

A 0-4 humiliation by Iran denting their confidence, European powerhouse Germany face African side Guinea in a must-win match of the FIFA U-17 World Cup here on Friday.

Germany, who have qualified for the FIFA U-17 World Cup as fifth place finisher from Europe via a play-off, began their campaign with an unconvincing 2-1 win over Costa Rica before slumping to an embarrassing 0-4 defeat to Iran.

Any further slip-up against Guinea in their last Group C match on Friday will see Germany making an early exit from the tournament.

The Christian Wueck-coached German side will need a win on Friday at the Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium to secure an automatic spot in the Round of 16 as one of the two group toppers.

With six points to their kitty, Iran have already qualified for the knock-outs.

Even a draw may see Germany through to the Round of 16 but they would want a win against Guinea as that will give them some confidence which has been shattered by Iran.

In their previous match against Iran, Germany dominated the ball possession but their forwards were out of sorts as they had just four shots on target while the Asian team had 12 such efforts, out of which they scored four goals.

If it was not for Germany goalkeeper Luca Plogmann making several important saves, Iran may have won that match in Margao by a bigger margin.

Germany have players of calibre of striker and captain Jann-Fiete Arp who recently made his Bundesliga debut for Hambur, but they will have to quickly forget their humiliation by Iran and brought their campaign back on track with a win against Guinea on Friday.

Guinea, on the other hand, have not won a match, having lost to Iran 1-3 in their opening fixture before playing out a 1-1 draw against Costa Rica in their previous game.

For them, it is a do-or-die match with just one point in their kitty. A win on Friday will give them a spot in the Round of 16 but anything less than that will send them crashing out of the competition.

In their previous match against Costa Rica in Margao, Guinea paid the price of the profligacy of their goal-shy forwards as they had as many as 42 shots at target as compared to just eight by their opponents .

Having wasted a fine chance to collect full three points in their previous match, Guinea will now have to try and notch up a win against Germany in their final group game on Friday.

They would take inspiration from Iran's 4-0 thrashing of the European side.



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