Germany Euro 2012 Roster: Latest on Team's Starting 11 and More
As the Euro 2012 start date begins to swing around, the puzzle begins to look a little clearer.
That puzzle being which players are to be selected by their respective countries.
Germany—one of the tournament favourites—are no different to anyone else when it comes to whittling down the numbers.
Here is their likely starting XI.
Manuel Neuer is Germany's first choice goalkeeper.
At present, he doesn't face much competition for a first-team berth, with Tim Wiese and Rene Adler possible candidates to back him up.
Per Mertesacker's ankle injury for Arsenal has meant that Mats Hummels has become even more critical to the German central defense.
The youngster is almost assured of a starting position unless Germany manager Joachim Low opts for a three-man defense.
Captain and star defender Philipp Lahm is one of the first names to go on the Germany team sheet before every game.
The left back has already notched 85 caps for his country and will be looking to add to that total in this tournament.
Former Manchester City defender Jerome Boateng has rejuvenated his career at Bayern Munich and played in eight of Germany's 10 qualifying matches for Euro 2012.
With Lahm on one side of the defense, Boateng will likely secure the opposite spot.
Holger Badstuber might not be the biggest name in Germany, but he is fast becoming Joachim Low's primary central defender.
Badstuber was the only central defender selected when Joachim Low experimented with a three-man defence—a sign that he has great faith in the youngster.
Bastian Schweinsteiger seems to have been around for decades now but he is still only 27.
Schweinsteiger was a little under-utilised in qualification, playing in just four of the possible 10 matches.
His defensive stability should ensure he starts more games than not, but versatile player Christian Trasch and defensive midfielder Simon Rolfes may push him all the way.
Perhaps one of the few players that is absolutely guaranteed a start is Mario Gotze,.
Gotze is one of the best talents that has ever come out of Germany and Joachim Low knows that he must start the youngster whenever possible.
This will be an opportunity for the 19-year-old to show the world what he is capable of.
Germany's midfield just oozes talent.
Mesut Ozil of Real Madrid is another bright attacking spark that is capable of greatness on his day.
Often criticized for being a little erratic form-wise, Ozil could form part of a deadly midfield attacking duo with Gotze.
With Mario Gotze and Mesut Ozil bombing forward, someone needs to help steady the ship.
Sami Khedira is Mesut Ozil's teammate at Real Madrid and should know exactly what to expect from his compatriot.
Khedira is a dynamic midfielder who covers a lot of yardage during a game—a trait that will help both the defence and attack.
Toni Kroos played nine of Germany's 10 qualifying matches and may look to dislodge Khedira at any given opportunity.
Once again, another proven midfield talent with a youngster highly capable of stepping in.
Thomas Muller is a flexible player who can fill a gap in midfield but has more recently been deployed as a forward.
Muller contributed seven assists in Germany's qualifying campaign and is certainly a goal threat.
Muller may come under pressure from Mario Gomez for pitch time.
Evergreen Miroslav Klose will feel hard done by if he isn't selected to start most games for Germany.
The striker has an absolutely incredible international goal-scoring record and has scored in every qualifying match he has played this campaign.
Domestically, Klose has notched 13 goals in 25 games in the league for Lazio.
Andre Schurrle of Bayer Leverkusen and Arsenal new boy Lukas Podolski will be the men trying to dislodge the German dinosaur.
All statistics were courtesy of UEFA.com and Wikipedia.com.
On Twitter? Follow me @petercwebster where I post all my B/R content.