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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Germans Wary of Ukraine Playoff

DORTMUND, Germany -- German goalkeeper and captain Oliver Kahn admitted he was nervous before Wednesday's playoff against Ukraine that could see the troubled giants fail to qualify for the World Cup finals for the first time.

Germany secured a 1-1 draw in Kiev in the first leg Saturday but the result did little to calm Kahn.

"The first leg was only a skirmish compared to what's ahead of us," said the Bayern Munich player.

"It's all or nothing now. We have every reason to be nervous."

The triple World Cup winners, whose qualifying campaign was derailed after a traumatic 5-1 defeat by England and a frustrating 0-0 draw with Finland, fought bravely in Kiev and poached a goal that could prove crucial with the away-goals rule.

"We have built a solid psychological basis, but we have only taken a small step toward the World Cup," said Kahn.

Head coach Rudi V?ller, who has hinted he may resign if Germany misses out on next year's finals in South Korea and Japan, was also being cautious.

"The 1-1 draw in the first leg is a reasonably good result, nothing less but nothing more," said the 1990 World Cup winner.

"We must totally forget about what happened in Kiev. The real fight is now."

V?ller has made it clear that Germany will not be looking for a goalless draw, especially with the return of first-choice strikers Carsten Jancker and Oliver Neuville.

Jancker had a foot injury and only appeared as a substitute on Saturday, while Neuville was suspended. The two should be paired up front, which means Oliver Bierhoff, who captains the team when he plays, will be left out again.

Ukraine coach Valery Lobanovsky, expected to quit after the game to concentrate on his Dynamo Kiev job, might decide to drop a couple of players who looked sluggish in the first leg.

Arsenal wingback Oleg Luzhny could be replaced by the faster Dmitry Parfyonov, while Tottenham Hotspur's Serhiy Rebrov, still struggling to recapture his form, might lose his place to Serhiy Shyshchenko.

The visitors, who have been more efficient away than at home in their qualifying campaign, warned they should not be dismissed.

"We are strong while playing away and I don't think the 1-1 draw in Kiev is such a bad result," said AC Milan striker Andriy Shevchenko.

"We can still make it."

n?Midfielder Mark Kinsella will stand in for injured captain Roy Keane when Ireland faces Iran in the second leg of its World Cup playoff, manager Mick McCarthy said Monday. Keane was ruled out Sunday by a longstanding knee problem that flared up in the wake of Saturday's 2-0 first leg win over Iran at Lansdowne Road.

Steve Staunton could be handed the captain's armband for Thursday's game, assuming he overcomes a hamstring tweak, while Niall Quinn is another bidding to reach match fitness.