Football / Preview / World Cup Wednesday 7Th July

World Cup: Wednesday 7th July

After both knocking out South American opposition in the quarters, Germany face Spain in an all-European World Cup semi-final.

Spain's Andres Iniesta


Germany (Bettorlogic rank 5) v Spain (4) (Weds, 19:30)

Germany have been the most impressive side of this World Cup so far, but they face a re-run of their doomed Euro 2008 final clash against Spain here. They have dispatched of top-five ranked opposition in their two previous knockout matches (England in the Last 16 and Argentina in the quarters) in emphatic fashion, winning both games by three clear goals. The Germans have scored the most goals in the tournament so far (13) and they have opened the scoring in four of their five games. Only three of 16 World Cup semi-finalists that have scored first have failed to qualify. They are now undefeated in 20 finals matches against top-five ranked opposition with 10 wins in normal time and 10 half-time stalemates, although their win-rate increases to eight in 14 games when the match is a knockout fixture. Germany have qualified in 12 of 14 knockout matches against top-five ranked teams.

Although this is their 13th semi-final appearance since 1970 - including both World Cups and European Championships – they have only once previously reached this stage having won their previous three matches, when they knocked out South Korea en route to the 2002 World Cup final. Generally, they have gone W5-D6-L1 in semi-finals with seven half-time draws.  

Spain failed to impress against Paraguay in their quarter-final, as they have done in most of their World Cup games thus far, however their squad strength can never be under-estimated. Historically, they have a poor record against top-five ranked teams with just two wins in 13 matches with six losses and seven half-time draws. The reigning European champions have qualified in both of their previous semis since 1984, but their opposition were Russia (Bettorlogic rank 29) in Euro 2008 and Denmark (16) in Euro 1984. This is Spain’s first-ever World Cup semi-final appearance.

All five semi-finals between two top-five ranked teams have been drawn since 1970, four of which settled the -2.5 goals market. Germany have been involved in four of the games, however they were the higher-ranked side on each occasion. When two teams separated by just one ranking position have met in knockout finals matches since 1970, the lower-ranked team have lost on just five of 28 occasions with 13 victories in normal time. The lower-ranked side have qualified in 17 of the 28 fixtures while 15 of the games were tied at the break. Six of the nine all-UEFA World Cup semis since 1970 have been settled in normal time while the higher ranked side has qualified in just one of the five such instances when both teams have been ranked inside the top-10.

Recommendations: HT draw 2.10, Bet365/Coral
                                     Germany to qualify 2.00, Various


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