Jul 4, 2014, 7:50 AM EDT
German midfielder Toni Kroos is playing a dangerous game.
Bfore his nation’s World Cup quarterfinal against France has even begun.
The 24-year-old Bayern Munich midfielder has been speaking out ahead of the last eight clash between the European giants at the Maracana on Friday, with the Real Madrid target brash, bold and confident about Germany’s chances of making the final four.
[ RELATED: Kroos talks Real Madrid, as move nears ]
Speaking to reporters before the quarterfinal in Rio de Janeiro, this is what Kroos had to say when asked about France’s midfield and how he rates his sides chances of making the final four.
“France have a very strong midfield but if all of us deliver our best performance, then I believe we are the better team,” Kroos said. “But we have to show that. It’s going to be very important for us to have possession and to win the duels. Then, I believe we will really have a good opportunity to win.”
There is certainly no shortage of belief in the German camp, even if seven players are struggling to be fit for the showdown vs. the French after a virus swept through the camp. Head coach Joachim Low confirmed on Thursday that several members of his squad have been struck down by ‘flu-like symptoms’ but should recover in time for the quarterfinal.
Kroos and Germany have yet to rediscover the form they showed in their 4-0 drubbing of Portugal in their World Cup opener, as narrow wins against the U.S. and Algeria have hardly flattered Das Mannschaft.
It seems like confidence is still high, as despite a few struggles the Germans have still qualified for their 8th-straight World Cup quarterfinal and it is the 14th time they’ve at least gotten to the final eight in their last 15 tournaments.
France have looked transformed under Didier Deschamps and have won three of their four games at this tournament, keeping three clean sheets in the process.
A mammoth clash awaits as Germany and France square off. Could the Germans over-confidence be their downfall?
- FOLLOW LIVE: USMNT takes on Peru in important tune-up match (Lineups) 0
- EXCLUSIVE: US Olympic coach Andi Herzog on Rio 2016, MLS, over-age players and more 0
- Real Madrid’s Perez says De Gea move failed because Manchester United lacks transfer “experience” 6
- Preview: USMNT to face Peru in tune-up for CONCACAF playoff vs. Mexico 0
- Three things we learned from USA U-23’s defeat vs. England U-21 0
- If you’ve ever criticized Jurgen Klinsmann or his USMNT, you don’t understand soccer 36