Germany legend Franz Beckenbauer has claimed England have been "stupid" to set up a World Cup last-16 clash with Germany. And Beckenbauer, a World Cup winner as a coach and a player, believes the England players are "burnt out" following a gruelling Premier League season.
"A game like this should be a semi-final, not a last-16 game," said Beckenbauer in Germany's Bild newspaper.
"Stupidly, the English have slipped up a little by finishing second in their group."
However, Beckenbauer believes Germany are fresher than Fabio Capello's side and that this will work in their favour on Sunday.
"The English look a little tired," he said.
"There is a good reason for that: the Premier League players have got to play far more games than their Bundesliga colleagues, including two national cup competitions.
"Therefore, when it comes to a World Cup or a European Championships, they are burnt out.
"Our players, on the other hand, seem to be in a physically better condition.
"Of course we respect them, but we certainly don't fear them.
"England's first two appearances at the World Cup were paltry, but they improved against Slovenia."