Spain expects Germany to improve its attack
Spain expects high-scoring Germany to be the perfect opponent in the World Cup semifinals.
Striker David Villa, whose tournament-leading fifth goal helped Spain beat Paraguay 1-0, said Germany's style will let the European champions rediscover their attacking game.
"A rival like Germany works better for us than one like we had in Paraguay," said Villa, who is one shy of matching Raul Gonzalez's national record of 44 international goals.
"Germany's a great team with an incredible run of results, always a tough opponent and probably the team in best form at this World Cup. But it's a game of 90 minutes between two great teams and anything can happen."
Germany has outscored opponents 13-2, eliminated England and Argentina in its last two matches by a combined 8-1.
"Two of the best teams in the World Cup have to play in the semifinal, so unlucky for one of them," said striker Fernando Torres, who again struggled against Paraguay as he continues his return from knee surgery. "They are an attacking team and they will try to win, try to attack. But we will have more space to go at them."
Torres scored the winning goal in the 1-0 European Championship final against Germany in Vienna two years ago, when Villa missed the match with a right leg injury.
Both players will be available for the match at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Wednesday.
"We'll try to play well, to remember the form that has achieved us success to here," midfielder Andres Iniesta said. "Sometimes we find [our style], sometimes we don't. We try to win by playing nice football, but it's not always possible."
Spain's players expect revenge to be on Germany's mind, even though its style is different thanks to younger players such as Mesut Oezil and Thomas Mueller. But Mueller, who has scored four goals, will miss the match after receiving two yellow cards.
"They're the best team at the World Cup, they showed that against Argentina and England, and we need to show maximum respect for them," goalkeeper Iker Casillas said. "It won't be an easy game — they will want revenge for the Euro defeat."
The winner will play either two-time champion Uruguay or the Netherlands in the final at Soccer City on July 11.