Portugal v Germany semi-final preview
Friday, June 26, 2015
Rui Jorge believes it will take an "almost perfect" Portugal display to win their Under-21 EURO semi-final against a Germany side told to be more clinical by coach Horst Hrubesch.
Article top media content
• Portugal seek first final appearance since 1994 against 2009 winners
• Rui Jorge and Horst Hrubesch demand more clinical finishing from their sides
• "We will have to be almost perfect to win," says Rui Jorge
• Hrubesch confident in his team's ability to step up a gear if needed
• Winners will play in the final at Prague's Eden Stadium on 30 June
Portugal: Sá; Esgaio, Raphael, Paulo Oliveira, Tiago Ilori; William, Sérgio Oliveira, João Mário, Bernardo Silva; Cavaleiro, Ricardo
• Out: None
• Doubtful: Tiago Ilori
(The defender had a thigh problem against Sweden but scans revealed no damage and he is expected to play.)
Germany: Ter Stegen; Korb, Ginter, Heintz, Günter; Kimmich, Can; Younes, Meyer, Schulz; Volland
• Out: None
Rui Jorge, Portugal coach
It is true that we've only scored two goals but we have been playing well and have created a lot more chances than we've scored. We will try to keep playing the same way. We've had more possession of the ball than all our opponents so far so it's a question of playing the same style of football and keeping our identity but trying to be more efficient in front of goal.
Our tactical approach against Germany will be the same as usual. They are a great team and we'll have to play in an almost perfect way if we are to beat them. [Leonardo] Bittencourt, [Kevin] Volland and a lot of other players have great quality.
As for them having one more day to rest it is something that's not good for our team of course. At this time of the season it is very important to have one day less or more to rest but that's not going to be an excuse tomorrow if the game doesn't go our way.
From day one of this long journey we've faced the same pressure so we are not going to be more nervous for the fact we are playing in the semi-finals now. I have a strong belief in my players and what they are capable of doing.
[On Ilori's availability] At the moment we're not sure yet so we will have to wait for tomorrow to find out if he can play or not.
Horst Hrubesch, Germany coach
I am confident because we've not been overrun in a single match yet. Whenever needed, we've been able to take our game up a gear.
We don't fear Portugal. For us it was always important to go step by step so it doesn't matter who we come up against. We've been committed to this process from the beginning and now we want to go to the final.
Throughout the tournament we have seen that the team and coach understand each other well and can rely on each other. It makes for a strong combination. The performances so far prove we have the right desire. This is why I have no concerns on the pitch – I am getting what I need from the players.
We saw from Portugal's style of play that they are capable of creating goals but like us they missed a chance here and there. Both teams will need to be clinical in this semi-final – we are capable of being compact and defending high and the only thing I could find fault in is that we need to be more clinical with our chances.
Tournament so far
Portugal (Group B winners)
England 0-1 Portugal (João Mário 57)
Italy 0-0 Portugal
Portugal 1-1 Sweden (Gonçalo Paciência 82; Tibbling 89)
Germany (Group A runners-up)
Germany 1-1 Serbia (Can 17; Djuričić 8)
Germany 3-0 Denmark (Volland 32 48, Ginter 53)
Czech Republic 1-1 Germany (Krejčí 66; Schulz 55)
Form guide (most recent first)
Senior internationals in squad (caps)
Portugal: Eight players with 26 caps between them:
William Carvalho (13), João Mário (3), Rafa Silva (3), Raphael Guerreiro (2), Ivan Cavaleiro (2), Paulo Oliveira (1), Ricardo Horta (1), Bernarndo Silva (1)
Germany: Six players with 15 caps between them:
Matthias Ginter (5), Marc-André ter Stegen (4), Kevin Volland (3), Christian Günter (1), Maximilian Arnold (1), Max Meyer (1)
• Both teams are unbeaten in 14 competitive matches Check out the details and much more in our extensive match background.