That defending was on display in Swedens playoff against Italy when it held the Italians scoreless in both legs of qualifier, and then again in the teams 1-0 win last Monday against South Korea. The South Koreans were held without a single shot on goal in that clean sheet win.
Saturdays total is set at 2.5 goals. The last two games between these two teams in 2012 and 2013 each produced eight goals.
England will be keenly watching this game in hope that Belgium slip up against Tunisia. Harry Kane earned England the three points against the northern African side, whose tenacious defending could frustrate Belgium.
The Germans are a -210 betting favorite in this weekends Group F action at sportsbooks monitored by . Sweden can punch its ticket into the knockout round with a win as +600 underdogs and stay in total control of its destiny with a draw at +340.
Germany has not failed to advance out of the group stage in any of its last 16 World Cup appearances, last failing to do so all the way back in 1938. Conventional wisdom suggests that the defending champions will find a way, but after being frustrated by Mexicos wall of defense last weekend, the path to the goal wont get much easier this Saturday against Swedens stout defending.
Germany breezed through its World Cup qualifiers with a 10-0 record, outscoring its opponents 43-4 along the way. But after losing its 2018 World Cup opener to Mexico, the squad now faces a critical game on Saturday against Sweden.
Germany has not lost a game to Sweden since 1988, going undefeated in its last seven matches against the Swedes with a record of 5-0-2.
Swedens strong defending played a major role in the teams qualifying for the World Cup as it outlasted a pair of much more established international teams in the Netherlands and Italy.
On most game days, a second-rate effort from Germany is more than enough to come away with a victory. But last Sunday, the German side came out of the gate flat and were punished by a strong Mexican counter-attack that eventually found the back of the net for the games first and only goal.
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Germany vs. Sweden OddsShark Matchup Report
While their attack looked unbalanced, there were defensive issues too. Yannick Carrasco did an unconvincing job at left wing-back which could tempt Roberto Martinez to switch to a back four.BBC will be showing the game live on BBC One and online.
Eden Hazard accused his teammates of hiding against Panama and said Lukaku went missing as Belgium laboured to a 3-0 win. Kevin De Bruyne and Hazard struggled to find space in attacking areas and Lukaku only had seven touches in the first half, which means Belgium will have to improve on their opening game performance if they want to increase their superior goal difference.
Where: Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, Russia
Germany looked sharper in the second half as it tried to find the equalizer, but it came up short to fall into this precarious 0-1 position in the group
When: Saturday, June 23, 2:00 p.m. ET
Betting Line / Total: Germany -210 / 2.5 Goals