Along with Spain, Germany are widely regarded as favorites in Euro 12, but former Germany goalkeeper Jens Lehmann thinks they'll be fortunate just to make it out of the group stage. And for man noted for his insanity both on and off the pitch, his reasons are somewhat understandable.
"I used to have a good feeling, but that has evaporated over the past two or three weeks," Lehmann said in an interview with the "Stuttgarter Zeitung."
"Now I think that if the Germans through the first round, it would be a great success," said Lehmann.
Though Germany must make it through the tournament's "group of death" in that first round, Lehmann's primary concern is the team's relaxed attitude towards training in the lead-up to the event.
"In the past it's always been that the preparation was very important," said Lehmann in the belief that the current batch of players was given too much time off following the end of the season. "To clear your head is nonsense. To clear their minds, there is nothing better than playing football," he continued. Yet, in a column for Goal.com, Lehmann also explains that his fears are further supported by the fitness concerns over key players like Manuel Neuer and Bastian Schweinsteiger, who likely needed that extra rest.
So it seems Jens Lehmann won't be picking his country to win Euro 12. But if they do win and you mock him for his lack of faith, be forewarned that he will steal the glasses right off your face.