Schweinsteiger: Germany need to be alert against France

The 29-year-old is wary of the threat that Bleus striker Karim Benzema will pose but insists that Die Mannschaft are a better side now than previously

Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger has warned his team-mates to be alert if they want to beat France in their World Cup quarter-final clash on Friday.

The two sides will be looking to book their place in the semi-finals of the tournament when they meet in Rio de Janeiro with France arguably having been the more impressive of the two sides so far in Brazil.

Didier Deschamps’s team were one of the few teams who secured victory in 90 minutes in the second round, with Joachim Low’s men requiring extra-time to defeat a stubborn Algeria side.

Despite Germany’s route to the quarter-finals, Schweinsteiger has admitted that he is looking forward to playing a “strong” Bleus team, although he is wary of the threat of striker Karim Benzema, who has three goals to his name so far in the tournament.

“When two former World Champions meet in the World Cup quarters, it’s bound to be a tough game. But that’s the beauty of this tournament. As you advance to the later stages, there will be matches like this,” Schweinsteiger told The Times of India.

“They [France] have a strong side and more importantly, they are playing very well. In the round of 16, where almost every match went to extra-time, only Colombia, Netherlands, and France won their matches within 90 minutes.

“We have to be alert since they are playing free-flowing football with Karim Benzema in tremendous form.”

Should Germany overcome France at the Maracana, Low’s side will play the winner of Brazil’s clash against Colombia in the next round. 

However, Schweinsteiger has talked down the prospect of facing the hosts in the semi-finals, although if it were to happen, the Bayern Munich man understands that the match would not be an easy contest.

When asked if it would be tough to play Brazil in the semi-finals, he said: “I cannot comment on that since we are yet to play our quarter-final first.

“It is impossible to take anything for granted. We had real tough matches in the group stage and then against Algeria we had to win it in extra-time.

“I do not understand how people could say that the match would be easy for the Germans. Easy matches just do not exist in World Cup.”

He added: “We are a more confident side now [than in the past]. In football, you cannot predict anything but we shall try our best to be ready for every situation now.”

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