Football’s grim reaper may have stayed well away from Germany’s door as they sit top of Group B’s “Group of Death”, but despite having racked up two wins from two, there remains a chance that they could exit the tournament on Sunday.
Admittedly it would take an improbably sequence of events for such an occurrence to be realised, but the impressive Euro 2008 finalists will be taking no chances in their final group game against Denmark – they’re 8/13 favourites to win this encounter and continue their impressive group form.
Mario Gomez – joint leading tournament scorer on three goals – might have been rested for wily veteran Miroslav Klose had things been sewn up by now, but should now resume his place at the top of Germany’s attacking pyramid and is duly 4/1 favourite to open the scoring.
One man who is definitely out though is right back Jerome Boateng, who sits out following suspension after collecting two yellow cards. Marcel Schmelzer is expected to come in at left back with Philipp Lahm switching flanks.
Denmark have a few selection issues of their own, with Dennis Rommedahl and Niki Zimling struggling with injury, while Nicklas Bendtner has found himself in trouble with UEFA after brandishing some logo-emblazoned boxer shorts after his brace against Portugal last week – don’t expect him to make the same mistake should he fire Denmark ahead at 8/1.
The Danish need to achieve a better result than the Portuguese manage against the Dutch in Group B’s other game, with a shock win priced at 5/1, though given Germany’s form a draw at 13/5 might be the best they can aim for and rely on Holland doing them a favour elsewhere.
Goals have not been scarce in this tournament so far, though less down to attacking panache and more due to defensive frailties in most of the sides on show. Expect this trend to continue should the Danes be without Zimling, a man who offers the back four vital protection.
His importance was only highlighted the other day when his early substitution through injury was pounced upon by a Portuguese side who registered a deserved win.
And the Germans are unlikely to be as wasteful as the Portuguese, and in particular Cristiano Ronaldo, with Gomez in top form and well fed by an excellent German midfield – over 2/3 goals looks the value bet at 10/11.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing