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World Cup 2014 : 'Weak link' Hoewedes out to keep Messi quiet

AFP  Santo Andre, July 11, 2014
First Published: 15:43 IST(11/7/2014) | Last Updated: 15:48 IST(11/7/2014)

The defender branded Germany's 'weakest link' says he is ready for the toughest job in football: keeping Lionel Messi quiet in Sunday's World Cup final.

Benedikt Hoewedes has forced his way into Joachim Loew's starting line-up after Germany arrived at Brazil 2014 without an established left-back.

Now he will run out at Rio de Janeiro's iconic Maracana Stadium to face Messi and Argentina for the world title.

Having kept the Selecao in check in the 7-1 semi-final thrashing of Brazil, Hoewedes' next task will be helping to shackle Messi.

Hoewedes says the Germany defence will pay Argentina's superstar the same close attention Cristiano Ronaldo received in the 4-0 rout of Portugal in the group stages.

"Messi is one of the best players in the world, but just as I said before the Portugal game when we faced Ronaldo, we have to defend as a team," said the left-back.

"We have to stifle his opportunities to score goal and create dangerous situations."

Hoewedes plans to help 'die Mannschaft' win the World Cup final to further prove his doubters wrong.

The Schalke 04 centre-back has played the 90 minutes of all six matches in the unfamiliar position and his performances have dispelled any doubters.

His former Schalke coach Felix Magath insisted "a weak point... remains Benedikt Hoewedes as a wing-back," in his column for the daily Hamburger Abendblatt two weeks ago.

'I'm no Roberto Carlos'
And while Hoewedes admits he is 'no Roberto Carlos', he is happy to provide Germany's attack with dead-ball options and works just as hard as Brazil's former star left-back.


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