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England U21 have the advantage going into Euro 2017 semi-final, says Germany boss

Date Posted,June 26, 2017

Germany Under-21 boss Stefan Kuntz claims England have an advantage ahead of their Euro 2017 semi-final showdown.

The 54-year-old believes the Young Lions’ extra rest could give them the edge ahead of Tuesday’s last-four game in Tychy.

Germany were runners-up in Group C after Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Italy knocked them off top spot, with England having already booked a semi-final place 48 hours before.

Kuntz said: “It could be an advantage that England have had a couple more days rest than us. But they are young players and they can handle it. It would be a small advantage.

Germany U21 boss reckons England will have some extra spring in their step (Photo: PA)
Aidy Boothroyd leads England U21s into their shot at the final on Tuesday (Photo: PA)

“It is a 50-50 game and whoever is in best shape with their performance will win.

“We need to improve our build-up game. We didn’t use spaces well enough. Also we had something to lose. It is a knockout match and we will be well prepared.

“The best four countries are Spain, Italy, Germany and England. These are right now the best countries in Europe. We are looking forward to seeing who is the best. It is fun.

“We want to play the biggest teams. After that you’ll know if you are better, or you get experience and know how to get better for the next time.”

Germany U21 boss Stefan Kuntz’s side has had less time to prepare for the final four (Photo: PA)
Calum Chambers prepares for Germany during training on Monday (Photo: UEFA via Getty)

Kuntz scored in the penalty shootout in Germany’s semi-final win over England at Euro 96, having also scored in normal time during the 1-1 draw at Wembley.

Germany won 6-5 on penalties after Gareth Southgate’s miss but Kuntz insisted his young team will not practice spot-kicks.

He said: “No, we won’t practice. The circumstances of running 120 minutes and the pressure of the situation you can’t create it. It makes no sense to train penalties.

“We have watched England in the group games and we had a test against them in March (a 1-0 win). We have lots of material and we will prepare our team accordingly.”

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