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World Cup 2018, Germany vs Sweden: What time is kick-off on Saturday, what TV channel is it on and what is our prediction?

Germany players pose for photos with fans - Getty Images Europe
Germany players pose for photos with fans - Getty Images Europe

What is it?

The second round of matches is underway as Germany take on Sweden in Group F. The much-fancied Germans were stunned in their opening game, going down 1-0 to Mexico, so a win against the Swedes is vital if they are to qualify from the group stages. Sweden got their campaign up and running with a 1-0 win over South Korea. And a win for Janne Andersson's side could see reigning world champions Germany exit the World Cup after the first round for the first time in 80 years.

When is it?

Saturday, June 23.

What time is kick-off?

7pm UK time.

What TV channel is it on?

ITV 1. Alternatively, you can follow the match live with us on Telegraph Sport.

Where is the game being played?

Fisht Stadium, Sochi.

World Cup 2018 stadium: Fisht Stadium

What is the team news?

There's been significant debate about the role of Marco Reus and whether he should be starting for Germany. Reus came on in the 60th minute against Mexico and Germany's attack was notably better once he got involved.

But Reus has suffered significant injuries the past few seasons, none bigger than a knee injury that caused him to miss more than half of last season with Dortmund.

"I really have no say in this. All I can do is make is as hard as possible for them to do without me," Reus said. "I try and give my all in training, offer myself and do hope of course I'll be picked in order to help Germany get out of the group."

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The squads in full:

Germany

Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona), Kevin Trapp (Paris St Germain).

Defenders: Jerome Boateng (Bayern Munich), Matthias Ginter (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Jonas Hector (Cologne), Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Marvin Plattenhardt (Hertha Berlin), Antonio Ruediger (Chelsea), Niklas Suele (Bayern Munich).

Midfielders: Julian Brandt (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Paris St Germain), Leon Goretzka (Schalke 04), Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City), Sami Khedira (Juventus), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Marco Reus (Borussia Dortmund), Sebastian Rudy (Bayern Munich), Mesut Ozil (Arsenal).

Forwards: Mario Gomez (VfB Stuttgart), Thomas Mueller (Bayern Munich), Timo Werner (RB Leipzig).

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Sweden

Robin Olsen, Karl-Johan Johnsson, Kristoffer Nordfeldt, Mikael Lustig, Victor Lindelof, Andreas Granqvist, Martin Olsson, Ludwig Augustinsson, Filip Helander, Emil Krafth, Pontus Jansson, Sebastian Larsson, Albin Ekdal, Emil Forsberg, Gustav Svensson, Oscar Hiljemark, Viktor Claesson, Marcus Rohden, Jimmy Durmaz, Marcus Berg, John Guidetti, Ola Toivonen, Isaac Kiese Thelin.

World Cup 2018 | Fixtures, groups, squads and more

What's the latest news?

Sweden's World Cup clash with Germany in Sochi on Saturday will carry extra sporting spice for their defender Martin Olsson because his sister is married to top German basketball player Dirk Nowitzki.

As soon as the draw was made the full-back's phone started buzzing with messages from his brother-in-law, who plays for the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA on the other side of the Atlantic.

"He's a big football fan, so there's a lot of football talk in the family," Olsson said. "We have a family chat on WhatsApp so there's been a good bit of banter. He probably wants Germany to win but it hasn't got serious yet, before the game starts it probably will."

Sweden outlasted Holland to advance in World Cup qualifying. When the Swedes got to the European play-off round and a chance to reach Russia, they methodically eliminated past champion Italy over two games.

At this point, why not knock out another high-profile team - and the pre-tournament favourites at that? If that were to happen, it would be the second consecutive World Cup where the defending champion have been knocked out of contention before the knockout stage.

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"We need to dare to do even more," Sweden coach Janne Andersson said after beating South Korea 1-0 in its opener.

Beating Germany would certainly throw even more chaos into an already unpredictable World Cup.

Sweden will find a wounded Germany line-up trying to rebound from a 1-0 loss to Mexico in the opener where they were thoroughly outplayed. It was the first time since 1982 that a German team lost its opening match at the World Cup. And immediately questions followed about the state of the squad.

What stood out in the loss to Mexico was Germany's susceptibility to the counter attack and the number of scoring opportunities allowed.

"Against Sweden it will be a different set-up. Sweden has different strengths and weaknesses compared to Mexico," Thomas Mueller said. "I don't expect them to be as fantastically gifted when it comes to transitions as the Mexicans, but having said that they have some players that can hurt us on the offensive."

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What are the odds?

Germany to win - 4/9

Draw - 7/2

Sweden to win - 8/1

What's our prediction?

Germany and Sweden haven't met since qualifying for the 2014 World Cup when they were in the same group. The teams played out a 4-4 draw in Berlin, before Germany earned a 5-3 win in Sweden on Oct 15, 2013. Another goalfest would be just what this tournament needs.

Prediction: Germany 3 Sweden 2

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