Mario Gomez is putting Germany's success before any personal ambition at UEFA EURO 2012, saying: "I want to win the tournament, not become the top scorer here."
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A relaxed Mario Gomez says his ambition is to win UEFA EURO 2012 rather than to become top scorer.
A brilliant double against the Netherlands took him to three goals for the tournament and the FC Bayern München forward is tied together with Croatia's Mario Mandžukić and Russia's Alan Dzagoev in the race for the adidas Golden Boot.
"I want to win the tournament, not become the top scorer here – that's the only goal I have", the 26-year-old said. Gomez is now getting the praise he expected to receive after scoring the only goal of the game in the Group B opener against Portugal.
"It wasn't nice for me [after the Portugal match]," he said. "We won and I scored the only goal against a strong team. I thought I would now get support from all directions, but unfortunately that was not the case and of course you are affected by criticism."
A reassuring arm around the shoulder from coach Joachim Löw helped. "It's not like I ran around totally bananas, but I spoke to the coach about it and he told me not to worry and that I had put in a good performance. When there is enormous pressure on you and you feel everyone is watching your every step, you cannot play with as much freedom as you would wish."
Impressive Germany have been tipped by many pundits to become European champions for the fourth time and Gomez hopes the Nationalmannschaft will come good this time after losing out in the final four years ago, as well as reaching the semi-finals of the 2006 and 2010 FIFA World Cups.
Gomez said: "Every tournament we have come closer. Hopefully now our time has come. But we've only won two group games and not achieved anything yet."