"No-one to hide from"
At VfB, Sami Khedira is an unquestioned first choice, clearing up from a central midfield position in front of the back four whilst also setting attacking impulses. At just 23, the midfielder from Bad Cannstatt has already collected a number of titles.
He was a youth team German championship winner with the VfB youth teams at Under 17' and Under 18' level before going on to claim the Bundesliga title with VfB Stuttgart's first team in 2007. In addition, Khedira was involved in the 2007 DFB Cup final and in summer 2009 he captained the German Under 21's' to European Championship glory. With his nomination to participate at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, a childhood dream now comes through for Khedira. Before departing for the tournament, the midfielder answered some questions from www.vfb.de.
Sami, the World Cup gets underway on June 11th. With what expectations are you going into the tournament?
Sami Khedira: "If every player in the team shows that he has the will to win the tournament, we can mst definitely go a long way. My favourites for the tournament are England, Spain and Brazil, but we've got no one to hide from. I got the opportunity to gather some tournament experience at the Under 21 European Championships'. The World Cup is naturally a step up from that."
Do you recall your first World Cup memory?
Sami Khedira: "I experienced some of the 1994 World Cup in the USA but the World Cup in France in 1998 was the first time I really got into it. I particularly enjoyed the games involving Zinedine Zidane, he really played fantastically. Back then I got a white t-shirt and wrote the number 10 and his name on it."
Who, in your opinion, will be the star of this World Cup?
Sami Khedira: "I really don't care who the new World Cup superstar is going to be. The only thing that counts in the end is the title."
What is your opinion of the German national team squad and how do you see your chances of actually playing?
Sami Khedira: "The basis of the national team has been in place for quite some time. During the pre-tournament preparations and in the friendly games I will attempt to make an impression and convince the trainer with my performances."