World Cup - I want permanent midfield role, says Germany's Lahm

Germany captain Philipp Lahm has staked his claim for a permanent central midfield role at the World Cup and beyond but said it was up to coach Joachim Loew to decide where he plays at the tournament in Brazil.

Reuters
World Cup - I want permanent midfield role, says Germany's Lahm
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Germany's Philipp Lahm controls the ball during their international friendly soccer match against Italy at the San Siro Stadium in Milan November 15, 2013 (Reuters)

Lahm, long considered among the best right backs in the world, made a surprise switch to central midfield for Bayern Munich this season under coach Pep Guardiola and has been outstanding for the Bavarian side.

Loew's midfield options have been limited by injuries to regulars Bastian Schweinsteiger and Sami Khedira, and Lahm said he would be playing there in the friendly against Chile on Wednesday.

"I feel comfortable in that position," he told reporters on Tuesday. "It is something new, new situations in midfield and you face different situations from those as a full back."

"I can imagine playing there in the coming weeks, months or years but I will always play where the coach thinks I am most needed.

"There are still a few months to go until the World Cup and we will see who is fit, who is injured and who is in form and at the end of the day it is the coach who decides."

Khedira tore his knee ligaments in November and his participation in the tournament starting in June is in doubt.

Schweinsteiger, his holding midfield partner, is still a long way from top form after recently returning following a string of injuries that ruled him out of action for months.

"You can use him anywhere and he always delivers top performances," winger Lukas Podolski said of Lahm. "He stood out in the position as right back, he used to play on the left as well and now in midfield.

"There are not many players in the world who can be deployed in that many positions," Podolski said.

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