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Podolski wants determined start

19 May 2012 19:42

Lukas Podolski has called on Germany to make a fast start as they bid to win the European Championships in Poland and Ukraine.

Joachim Loew's Germany are among the pre-tournament favourites after qualifying with a 100 percent record, and also impressing en route to the semi-finals of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Podolski, who will join English Premier League club Arsenal from Cologne during the close season, wants Germany to set their sights on maximum points in their Group B opener against Portugal on June 9.

"We don't need to hide from our opponents," he said.

"We are going into this tournament to win it, we have the confidence and we have to be able to beat every opponent even if they are Holland, Portugal or Denmark.

"It will be important to start with a win, then you can let the tournament play itself out."

Germany went down 1-0 to Spain in the final of Euro 2008, and fell victim to the same team in South Africa two years ago.

Defending champions Spain are among the other favourites, along with World Cup finalists the Netherlands.

Podolski is paying little attention to the pre-tournament speculation, focusing instead on matters within his team's control.

"I don't care who the favourite for the tournament is," he said.

"We want to play to win the title and we will give everything to achieve that. Who is favourite and who is in the final does not matter."

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 9 +15 23
2 9 +15 19
3 9 +9 17
4 9 +5 16
5 9 +4 14
6 9 +3 14
7 9 +1 14
8 9 +3 13
9 9 +2 12
10 9 +0 11
11 9 -2 11
12 9 -2 11
13 9 -1 10
14 9 -5 10
15 9 -10 10
16 9 -3 9
17 9 -4 9
18 9 -9 8
19 9 -10 7
20 9 -11 4

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