Euro 2016: Germany's Boateng confident of being fit for quarterfinal
June 27, 2016 | 2:12 PM
by Reuters

Lille: Germany defender Jerome Boateng, who scored in their win over Slovakia on Sunday, said his calf injury was improving and he was confident of being fit for the quarter-final with holders Spain or Italy.

Boateng, who thundered in the opening goal from 25 metres after eight minutes of their 3-0 victory, was injured in Germany's final group match against Northern Ireland but recovered to play for 72 minutes on Sunday.

"My calf has kept up quite well in this game, though it is still not perfect," he told reporters. "I have sufficient time to prepare now and everything should go well."

Germany will face either holders Spain or Italy in the last eight next Saturday but Boateng said he had no real preference.

"Spain are technically the best team in the tournament who will have a lot of possession. I don't know whether we would play pressing against them because they're so strong when they're on the ball as they've played together for years," he said. "They have a lot of patience and good positional play."

Germany won 4-1 in a friendly against Antonio Conte's Italy side earlier this year but the Italians have enjoyed victories against the Germans at major tournaments, such as the 2006 World Cup and the 2012 European Championship.

"The Italians are well schooled tactically, they work together well as a team," Boateng said.

Germany's defence have yet to concede a goal at Euro 2016, though the Bayern Munich player acknowledged this could change.

"It worked well so far but we'll get opponents who will create more chances," he said. - Reuters

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