Team Manager rebukes Lahm for captaincy comments | sports | Hindustan Times
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Team Manager rebukes Lahm for captaincy comments

sports Updated: Jul 06, 2010 21:41 IST

Germany team manager Oliver Bierhoff, on Tuesday, criticised acting skipper Philipp Lahm for expressing his desire to hold on to the captain's armband long term.

"It's not a great idea to choose the most important week of the World Cup to say that, when sporting concerns should be top priority," said Bierhoff, the day before Germany's semi-final meeting with Spain.

The former Germany international striker added, however, that Lahm's comments had caused "no grinding of teeth" in the squad.

Lahm, who has captained Germany in the absence of Michael Ballack and who will win his 71st cap against Spain on Wednesday, told German media on Tuesday that he hoped to continue as captain beyond the World Cup.

"The captain's role has brought me a lot of pleasure. It's a real joy. Why would I want to give it back?" the Bayern Munich full-back told Bild newspaper.

"I'd love to keep the armband, I want more responsibilities. But we will see what happens."

Bierhoff also said that there was no link between Lahm's remarks and the departure of Ballack, who left South Africa on Monday evening after spending a few days with his team-mates.