Preview: Germany v Poland

Anyone who has sat through as least five minutes of high school history about World War II needs no briefing about the historical significance of the match between Germany and Poland.

    Divided loyalties: The Polish born Germans, Podolski (l) and Klose (r)

    However the Poles need no further motivation than World Cup survival in preparation for the clash in Dortmund on Wednesday.

    After a tepid performance in their opening match in which a defeat to Ecuador left their campaign hanging by a thread, the pressure is now on.

    And the Germans, being perfect hosts, ensured they reminded them.

    "Poland are under pressure and there is a lot of discontent back home after their defeat to Ecuador so we should beware," said Captain Michael Ballack, who returns from injury for the match.

    German coach Jurgen Klinsmann was also happy to turn the screws.

    Ballack: all smiles on return

    "Polish players know their public are not happy and realise it is all or nothing," he said.
      
    "They will be fired up to do everything they can to stay in this tournament. It will be a heated encounter."

    Poles apart

    Adding to the Poles frustration will be the fact that two Polish born players are currently playing, and starring, in the German side.

    Double goal scorer Miroslav Klose and midfielder Lukas Podolski were both born over the border and the two have admitted it will be an emotional moment when they walk out onto the pitch.

    "It will be special and a bit strange to hear the Polish national anthem and then the German one afterwards," explained Cologne’s Podolski.

    "I will not sing either of them because I feel at home in both countries. I have not quite lost my Polish heart."

    That must be little consolation to the Polish talent scouts who allowed him and Klose to slip through their fingers.

    Germany will be buoyed entering the fixture, Poland will be desperate.

    This match will definitely be one with feeling.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


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