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Köpke hopeful Germany can end 16-year wait

With Germany now just two wins away from their first major international trophy in 16 years, UEFA.com looks back on their success at EURO ’96 with goalkeeper Andreas Köpke.

Köpke was a key figure in Germany’s triumph in England, perhaps most notably saving Gareth Southgate’s spot kick in the penalty shoot-out victory against the hosts in the semi-finals. Berti Vogts’s side were then level at 1-1 with the Czech Republic after 90 minutes in the Wembley showpiece, before Oliver Bierhoff’s golden goal secured a third European crown in dramatic fashion.

“We weren’t favourites to win the competition back in 1996, but we blossomed as a team during the tournament,” said Köpke, now Germany’s goalkeeping coach. “We had a couple of injury problems, the team grew together as a result and we became stronger. We were successful back then because we played as a team and we had the luck that you need to become European champions.

“But the team we have now is far more technically gifted. We play great football, we cover a lot of ground and we’re clinical in front of goal. All the right ingredients for success are there and this has all improved considerably since 1996. But it’s difficult to compare the style of the two teams.”

For more thoughts from Köpke on the current Germany crop and the threat posed by Italy in Thursday’s semi-final in Warsaw, view the video above.

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Source Article from http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/news/newsid=1834296.html?rss=1834296+Köpke+hopeful+Germany+can+end+16-year+wait

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