Oliver Bierhoff: Germany are wary of England after youth-team successes

Germany’s general manager Oliver Bierhoff admits England’s success at youth-team level has given the world champions a wake-up call.

In the last five months England’s Under-17s and Under-20s have won their respective World Cups and that has made other nations sit up and take notice – not least the reigning senior champions.

“We can’t rest on our laurels after the successful qualification campaign and the Confederations Cup win,” Bierhoff told a press conference ahead of their friendly against Gareth Southgate’s side at Wembley.

“It’s completely different at a World Cup. We are the ones being chased.

“We can see what is going on in countries around the world. England are the Under-17 and Under-20 world champions, and France and Brazil have also been improving massively.

England’s Rhian Brewster, Joel Latibeaudiere (centre) and Phil Foden (right) were part of England's Under-17 World Cup-winning side (Steve Paston/PA)
England’s Rhian Brewster, Joel Latibeaudiere, centre, and Phil Foden, right, were part of England’s Under-17 World Cup-winning side (Steve Paston/PA)

“Everyone will be watching us and will want to knock us off the top. We know the great potential we have.

“Therefore it is important to use the four big matches, against England, France, Spain and Brazil, to improve and keep on developing as a team.

“We have to all give 100 per cent and not let up for a second.”

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