Odds: Germany (-275), Greece (+995), Draw (+410)
Total: Over 2.5 goals (+107), Under 2.5 goals (-116)About Germany:
FIFA world ranking: No. 3
Recent matches: 2-1 win vs. Denmark (Group B Match Day 3), 2-1 win vs. Netherlands (Group B Match Day 2), 1-0 win vs. Portugal (Group B Match Day 1), 2-0 win vs. Israel (05/31/12), 3-5 loss vs. Switzerland (05/26/12).
You’re looking at the co-favorite to win the Euro Cup, the third ranked team in the FIFA world rankings and the biggest favorite in the European Champion quarterfinals according to the oddsmakers.
It’s hard to find a soft spot in Germany’s game right now. Die Mannschaft was the only team to win all three games in the group stage (no easy accomplishment in the Group of Death) and about the only thing people can say critically about is that it didn’t blow any of its opponents out.
The Germans have looked comfortable and familiar on the pitch. The positive chemistry isn’t a fluke. Seven of Germany’s starting 11 are teammates at the club level for Bayern Munich.About Greece:
FIFA world ranking: No. 15
Recent results: 1-0 win vs. Russia (Group A Match Day 3), 1-2 loss vs. Czech Republic (Group A Match Day 2), 1-1 draw vs. Poland (Group A Match Day 1), 1-0 win vs. Armenia (05/31/12), 1-1 draw vs. Slovenia (05/26/12).
It’s a familiar storyline for Greek soccer fans. Greece was the little engine that could in 2004, winning the Euro Cup as 100/1 pre-tournament long shots. The boys in blue and white were left for dead after losing the Czechs but upset the Russians (as +400 underdogs) in their final group match and snuck into the quarterfinals.
Greece is missing its captain and best player, Giorgos Karagounis, due to suspension.
There is some motivation outside of football rivalries. Greece and Germany are on opposite of the European Union economy. Read the Wall Street Journal Sports’ piece
on the matter for a better background.Tactics and formations
The Germans know Greece will sit back and look for a chance of a counter attack if the opportunity presents itself. They also know Greece will be happy to take its chances in penalties. Expect Germany to play patient football – in its usual 4-2-3-1 – and try to tire the Greeks out by chasing the ball for long stretches. Jerome Boateng served his one-game suspension and will return to left back for the German side.Projected Germany lineup
: Neuer, Boateng, Hummels, Badstuber, Lahm, Khedira, Schweinsteiger, Muller, Ozil, Podolski, Gomez.
The formation might look like 10 deep lined up along the box for Greece. But the team makes the best of its limited scoring chances.
Projected Greece lineup
: Sifakis, To’sidis, Pa’poulos, K Pa’poulos, Tzavelas, Katsouranis, Maniatis, Salpingidis, Fotakis, Samaras, Gekas.