Castrol Nordic

GERMANY v SWEDEN – Match Preview – FIFA World CupTM Qualifiers – 16thOctober 2012

Press Release   •   Oct 16, 2012 11:52 GMT


Castrol Performance research shows that towering centre-half Per Mertesacker is currently enjoying a superb run of form for both his club Arsenal and Germany, with the former Werder Bremen man key to his country’s defensive solidity in the FIFA WORLD CUP 2014™ qualifiers so far.

While Jogi Loew’s array of outstanding attacking midfielders has been the focus of a lot of attention, the reintroduction of Mertesacker into the Germany first 11 has also been a key factor in their impressive start to the FIFA WORLD CUP 2014™ qualifiers. Indeed, Germany have shipped just one goal in the two games the Gunners’ star has played.

In the Premier League, Mertesacker has been key to Arsenal’s impressive, and defensively sound, start to the new campaign, with the German ranking fifth in terms of passing accuracy amongst centre-halves while overall, he has already made three last man saving tackles, more than any other player.

 The centre-half’s value to his national team is also highlighted by the fact that since the start of the FIFA WORLD CUP 2010™ qualifiers, the Mannschaft have won 89% of the competitive games in which  he has played and shipped just 0.56 goals per games in that period. This compares favourably to when the big man didn’t play, with Germany conceding 0.88 goals per game and winning an inferior 82% of those competitive fixtures.


According to Castrol Performance analysis, midfielder Alexander Kacaniklic was the key to Sweden’s lucky escape in their FIFA WORLD CUP 2014™ qualifying game against the Faroe Islands last week, with the Fulham schemer netting his country’s first goal of the game and inspiring his side to victory.

1-0  down and heading for a shock defeat, Sweden were struggling until the introduction of the Fulham man, who mustered two shots, including a goal, and embarked on two dribbles (more than any other player in the whole game).

Playing on the left flank, Kacaniklic drifted into the box to score his goal on 65 minutes, which was set up by the ubiquitous Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Kacaniklic – Faroe Islands v Sweden – Oct 12th

The former Liverpool youth starlet already has one assist under his belt for Fulham in the Premier League this season while he is also the club’s top dribbler, embarking on 20 dribbles so far this season.

So with a decent start to this domestic season, and a superb cameo appearance against the Faroe Islands, Kacaniklic is surely pushing hard for a starting berth against the Germans on the 16th.

Read more and see pictures in attached Word version.