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Klose aims to break World Cup goal scoring record

Ahead of their semifinal match against Spain, German striker Miroslav Klose insists 'die Mannschaft' have what it takes to beat the European champions.

Germany's Miroslav Klose

Klose is sitting on 14 World Cup goals

Germany has the class to beat European champions Spain in their World Cup semifinal showdown on Wednesday, said Bayern Munich and Germany striker Miroslav Klose.

Speaking a day after scoring a brace in Germany's 4-0 demolition of Argentina in the quarters, Klose said he had his eyes on becoming the all-time World Cup top scorer.

"I want to score at least five goals at the World Cup. And I will be very satisfied if I score six," Klose told a news conference.

The 32-year-old scored five goals in World Cups in 2002 and 2006 and has so far netted four times in the 2010 tournament. That puts him one goal behind record scorer Ronaldo of Brazil, who netted 15 World Cup goals between 1998 and 2006.

Measured, yet confident

Klose said that his team wouldn't get carried away after several resounding victories throughout the competition, including a 4-1 win over England and a 4-0 thumping of Australia.

"Spain is better than England and Argentina, no question. They are not unbeatable, and we will try to expose their weaknesses ... We are better than 2008 and want to show that on the pitch," said Klose.

The Germans will line up against Spain without young forward Thomas Mueller, whose red-hot form has been one of the pillars of Germany's effectiveness. The 20-year-old was given a yellow card in the win against Argentina and will miss the semifinal clash.

Germany's Thomas Mueller

Mueller has been a revelation this World Cup

Germany coach Joachim Loew sought to downplay worries over having to rejig his lineup, insisting he had enough talent at his disposal to cover the loss of Mueller.

"It's clear it's a blow for us - he has shown himself to be dangerous in front of goal. But we have players who can replace him," Loew said.

Possible replacements for Mueller include Hamburg attacking midfielder Piotr Trochowski and young Bayern attacker Toni Kroos, both of whom have been given game time in South Africa.

Stuttgart-based striker Cacau is also an option, but rumors still persist about an abdominal muscle strain that kept him out of the quarterfinals.

Author: Darren Mara (dpa/AFP)
Editor: Nancy Isenson

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