Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Germany desperate to break Italian curse

Captain Philipp Lahm insists Germany must beat Italy in Wednesday night's friendly to break the Italian curse on his team and end 16-years of defeat at the hands of the Azzurri.

"We want to prove that we belong amongst the world's best football nations and break this Italy curse," said Lahm.

Germany host Italy in Dortmund on Wednesday at the same stadium where the Italians knocked the hosts out of the 2006 World Cup on their way to winning the title.

Germany have a poor record in matches between the two nations with Italy enjoying 14 wins compared to Germany's seven victories with eight games drawn. The last time Germany beat Italy was a 2-0 win in Zurich in June 1995 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Swiss Football Federation and coach Joachim Löw wants to correct the record.

"We haven't beaten Italy for nearly 16 years, from those statistics, you can see they are a team we have feared in the past," said the 51-year-old. "I want to break that record, that is our goal. We want to continue last year's trend."

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