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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 17, 2006

Togo coach: 'Skilless' Germany have no hope

WEERT, Netherlands, May 17 (Reuters) - Hosts Germany have no chance of winning the World Cup because of their lack of skill, according to Togo's German coach Otto Pfister.

"Germany have no chance. I don't think they can even get to the final, or even the semi-final," said Pfister, who took over as Togo coach in February.

"I think if they get to the quarter-final they do very well," he told Reuters in an interview.

"It's quite simple, you need skill and Germany doesn't have that. (Brazil coach) Carlos Alberto Parreira has another problem, he has to think who is on the bench.

"Germany don't even know who to put on the pitch."

Togo will make their World Cup debut at the finals beginning on June 9. They are grouped with France, Switzerland and South Korea.

"It's difficult for us, our players are playing all over the place in Europe and even now we are still waiting for players to arrive. I only met the players for the first time on Thursday," he said.

Despite the difficult preparations, Pfister thinks anything can happen.

"You have the rankings, Brazil number one ... Togo number 59, Switzerland number, I don't know. It doesn't matter on the day, anyone can beat anyone on their day," he said.

Pfister has coached six African national sides and steered Ghana to the African Nations Cup final in 1992.

The 67-year-old took over from Nigerian Stephen Keshi after a disappointing African Nations Cup where Togo failed to score a single goal.

"I was not trainer during the African Nations Cup. I have been trainer since February 10 and everything before that doesn't concern me. I start at zero and we reinforce the team," he said.

Togo were the first squad to arrive in Germany on Monday and will play their first match against South Korea in Frankfurt on June 13.

"The fact we play Korea first will help, but on paper nothing matters. If we get the group together and they play well, then the second round is a possibility for us," Pfister said.

He was disappointed that Arsenal's Emmanuel Adebayor, scorer of 11 goals for Togo in qualification, will not join the squad until Friday due to the Champions League final.

The striker will not take part in Wednesday's final against Barcelona because he is cup-tied, having played for Monaco earlier in the competition.

"I think he has the potential to make a mark on the finals in Germany. He has terrific pace and skill, a special player," the former Senegal and Ivory Coast coach said.

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