Germany will enter Ukrainian territory at next summer’s European Championships as arguably the biggest threat to Spain’s grip on the Henri Delaunay trophy.
Joachim Low’s side are unbeaten in their last eight international games and qualified seamlessly for the tournament with the best record on the continent, winning all ten of their Group A ties and slamming home 34 goals for good measure.
The Germans have long since shed their stereotypical image of being ruthlessly efficient and the aesthetic attacking prowess of Mesut Ozil, Mario Gotze, Thomas Muller and Mario Gomez makes them a guilty pleasure to watch.
Ahead of the trip to a bitterly cold Kiev, ‘die Mannschaft’ have a couple of selection issues, with keeper Manuel Neuer, skipper Philipp Lahm, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Miroslav Klose all missing.
But those absences will do little other than further highlight the battery of top-class players being rolled out on the Bundesliga conveyor belt of talent year after year.
It’s hard to look past a Germany win, which is why bwin’s 3Way football betting market has them at 31/50 to chalk up another victory. But if that price doesn’t float your boat, get on them to win with over 2.5 goals in the game at 13/10.
New customers who sign up for a bwin account are entitled to a £25 free bet and putting that on this particular outcome could potentially return you an Angela Merkel-pleasing £57.50.
But what of their opponents and next summer’s tournament co-hosts, Ukraine? Andrei Shevchenko is their captain and talisman but the man who flopped in the Premier League is another five years on from that, and surrounded by much less quality.
Indeed, Oleg Blokhin has been dishing out caps to all and sundry as he seeks to find the right formula to make a decent fist of it on home soil in less than 12 months’ time.
Without having the need to qualify for the event, Ukraine have had plenty of friendlies in which to fine tune. They have won their last two against Estonia and Bulgaria, but they’ve been fodder to the better sides, having lost against Czech Republic, Uruguay, Sweden, France and Italy this year.
That would explain their odds of 17/4 for the win, with the draw at 14/5, although if you fancy them to pick up a result, the double chance at 6/5 might be worth a look.
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