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Germany coach defends Lehmann No1 status

Germany goalkeeper coach Andy Kopke explained: "Jens is one of the best goalkeepers in Europe when he is in top form and I'm sure we will get him there.

"The lads have got to present themselves well and show who is the best."

Kopke defended former Arsenal goalkeeper Lehmann, who attracted criticism for his comments about the ball which is being used at Euro 2008.

Lehmann spoke out after a poor outing in the recent 2-2 draw with Belarus, with many seeing the veteran's comments as nothing more than an excuse.

But after Czech Republic and Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech made similar remarks, Kopke believes there is substance to the argument.

"It is certainly a special ball," he said. "Not only Jens Lehmann has mentioned it, but many other goalkeepers too."

On the plus side, midfielder Torsten Frings is looking forward to testing opposing goalkeepers.

"If you hit it right, then it really does fly and I think we are going to see a lot of goals from distance," he said.

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