Germany happy to meet familiar faces in Brazil

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Germany coach Joachim Low admitted it was “special” to be drawn against Jurgen Klinsmann’s USA at the World Cup.

Germany, who are desperate to end their comparative trophy drought, having not lifted the World Cup since winning the tournament in 1990, will also face previous tournament opponents Ghana and Portugal in Group G.

But it is the game against the US – in Recife on June 26 – in their final group game which has attracted most of the headlines in Germany.

Famously, Low worked under Klinsmann at the 2006 World Cup in their homeland – when the Germans finished third.

Low said: “We’re not only facing Jurgen Klinsmann again, but we also had Ghana in our 2010 World Cup group and Portugal at Euro 2012, so we’ll be facing some familiar faces, but it’s certainly special to have the USA in the group.”

The USA beat Germany 4-3 in the US Soccer Federation’s centennial celebration match in Washington in the summer.

Germany will now set about the task of confirming their base for the tournament, with their matches in the northern cities of Salvador, Fortaleza and Recife, venues that European nations wanted to avoid.

Low added: “We know now who we’re up against and where we’re playing, so now we can take the next step and work towards the World Cup.

“We’re going to have to get used to the hot and humid conditions.”

For the second World Cup running, Russia manager and former England boss Fabio Capello saw the nation he is leading be handed a favourable draw in the group stages.

Russia were pooled in Group H with Belgium, Algeria and South Korea, with the Italian happy enough with developments.

It’s the second successive World Cup that Capello will pit his wits against Algeria, who were in England’s group in South Africa along with Slovenia and the US.

On Russia’s draw, Capello said: “The draw is not so bad.

“We have got interesting opponents. We know Korea well, recently having played a friendly against them. The Belgians are at the moment one of the best teams in Europe, in my opinion. We know less about Algeria, but we’ll have to test ourselves against them.”

“Another important thing is the location we play is in the centre of Brazil, not the north where it is real warm and humid and difficult to recover energy. I am happy.”