Sane ready to show best form for Germany

Douglas Costa and Marcelo were in high spirits as the side trained in Berlin on Sunday

Though Brazil coach Tite said before the game in Berlin's Olympiastadion that revenge for the side's 7-1 loss in the 2014 World Cup semifinal was not in his players' minds, he acknowledged there was no getting over the result. However, they now possess another superstar in Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus and he powered a header past the floundering Kevin Trapp as the visitors cranked up the pressure shortly before the interval.

He's right. Friendlies rarely have much importance, but there's no doubt a clash with the world champions less than three months before the start of the World Cup presents a huge psychological hurdle for Brazil's new-look team.

He also said Marvin Plattenhardt would replace Jonas Hector at full back while Leroy Sane and Ilkay Guendogan would start as Germany aim to equal their unbeaten run of 23 matches dating back from 1978-80.

Brazil suffered their heaviest home defeat when Germany hit four goals in six devastating first-half minutes of the Belo Horizonte semi-final almost four years ago. The problem for them is that Brazil have well and truly moved forward - on the pitch at least.

For Tuesday's Berlin friendly, Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho is expected to replace Douglas Costa in the only change from the team which beat Russian Federation 3-0 in Moscow on Friday without the injured Neymar.

The absence of star player Neymar is not the handicap it might have previously been. "The more you talk about it, the less this ghost disappears".




Brazil, who have lost just once in the 17 matches since coach Tite took over, will be missing injured Neymar while the Germans are without Mesut Ozil, Thomas Mueller and Manuel Neuer among others. Even Neymar and Philippe Coutinho - both attacking players - work extremely hard at the back.

Unless Tite has a sudden change of mind, or injuries mount, neither can expect to go Russian Federation, and even the first-choice status of PSG's Thiago Silva, who missed the Belo Horizonte battering with a suspension, is doubtful.

Four years ago against Germany, Brazil's ineffective attack consisted of Oscar, Bernard, Fred and Hulk. Senior men - like Philipp Lahm, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Miroslave Klose - have retired, but the strength in depth shown off at last summer's Confederations Cup, when a "weakened" Germany won the gold medal, is genuine.

The Germany we see in pre-tournament friendlies is not the Germany we will see when the World Cup kicks off. Loew likes to tinker and try things, sometimes at the cost of overall performance.

Germany coach Joachim Low. He remembers vividly how watching the famous 7-1 felt.

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