By FRANCO PANIZO
Berti Vogts may have been recently appointed to serve as a special advisor to the U.S Men’s National Team at this summer’s World Cup, but that does not mean he will be rooting for the Americans in Brazil.
Vogts reportedly admitted in an interview earlier this month that he will be supporting his native Germany at this summer’s tournament despite the fact that the European powerhouse will face the Americans in their final Group G match on June 26. The 67-year-old Vogts – who won a World Cup with Germany as a player before becoming its manager – said that he will be offering U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann as much advice as he can, but that he does not intend to root for anyone but Germany.
“I do not know what people think,” said Vogts, who is also currently the head coach of Azerbaijan. “That I (am) now the great enemy of the Germans because I advise Jurgen Klinsmann? I’ll sit in Brazil in the stands and hope that Germany is world champion, and I will certainly not cheer when the U.S. score a goal against us.”
Vogts was named a special advisor by Klinsmann back on March 30, and the two are currently in Miami along with scout Matthias Hamann to scout Ghana during its friendly against South Korea. The U.S. opens the World Cup against Ghana on June 16 before playing Portugal and Germany.
There is no denying that the Americans’ three group stage opponents have talent, but Vogts believes that the skill those teams possess will require the U.S. to be as fit as possible in order to have any shot of at advancing from a Group G that many observers consider the Group of Death.
“Of course, Germany, Ghana and Portugal are superior to Americans in footballing terms,” said Vogts. “That is why the U.S. team must (have) top-driven (work rates). Their advantage is that Americans know the heat. That’s why I advised Jurgen in preparation for a high-running intensity in training. You need to play to this advantage.”
Vogts will offer more tips like that to Klinsmann in Brazil, but that is far as his support will go for the Americans.
“Now he called me and invited to be with the team during the World Cup,” said Vogts. “If he has any questions, I will answer them. That’s all.”
What do you think of Vogts’ comments? Agree that the U.S. has to be in tip-top shape to compete with the likes of Ghana, Portugal and Germany?
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