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Will Kahn replace Lehmann in last match?

Jens Lehmann's future with Germany's national soccer could depend on coach Juergen Klinsmann. Check out why Arsenal goalie wants 'Ollie' to replace him.

india Updated: Jul 08, 2006 12:49 IST

Jens Lehmann's future with Germany's national soccer could depend on coach Juergen Klinsmann.

Oliver Kahn's chances of starting in goal in the third-place match at the World Cup could depend upon Lehmann.

Lehmann, who was chosen over Oliver Kahn to be Germany's starting goalkeeper at this year's World Cup, helped the host team reach the semifinals, where it lost to Italy 2-0 in extra time.

"Whether or not I stay on would depend on my personal situation and whether Juergen stays," Lehmann said on Thursday.

"I don't think it's up to us to demand anything of Juergen. He knows the whole country loves the new kind of football he has introduced. I don't think he needs any more petitions for him to know we all want him to stay on."

The run to the semifinals helped Klinsmann revived the much maligned German team. But now that even his critics want him to stay, Klinsmann remains undecided about his future.

His contract ends after the World Cup and he has said before he wants to consult with his family before making a decision. Klinsmann has resisted calls to move back to Germany from his adopted home in California.

"He got a lot of flak before the World Cup and it was a constant balancing act between his family life and the national football team," Lehmann said.

"Juergen is in a bit of a dilemma because he has created a dependancy. He triggered something new and wonderful since introducing a new training method and instilled in us a sense of personal responsibility.

"The players are very motivated and if he left, there would be huge disappointment." Lehmann also said he would possibly let rival Kahn stand in for him in the third-place match against Portugal if the coaches would let him make the choice.

"If the coach leaves it up to me, then I would talk with Ollie. It would be a nice personal farewell for him," Lehmann said.

Kahn started in goal at the 2002 World Cup, giving up two goals to Ronaldo in a 2-0 loss to Brazil.