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England prepare to face old rivals Germany in last sixteen

One of international football's most historic, and dramatic, rivalries is set to be renewed when England face Germany.

It's a fixture steeped in emotion and iconic moments not least at Wembley where Tuesday's last sixteen tie will take place.

Twice before have these two sides met at Wembley in a major tournament. England triumphed in 1966 to lift the World Cup whilst the Germans beat England on penalties to reach the final of Euro 96, with current England manager Gareth Southgate missing the decisive spot kick.

It was always expected that should England win their group they would face a stern test against the runners up of a group that contained Germany, World champions France and reigning Euro champions Portugal, who were eliminated from the tournament by Belgium on Sunday.

That it is Germany who England will face only adds extra spice to the fixture, where victory could see a clear route to the final given the teams on this side of the draw, and even more so after the Netherlands shock defeat to the Czechs. 

From an England perspective Euro 96 has been referenced heavily given the similarities to this tournament, where England have played all their games on home soil.

Southgate has insisted in the build up to this game that his team are less concerned with the history between the sides, pointing to the fact that most of the squad weren't even born in 1996.

With 45,000 fans in attendance however the players will be made well aware that the importance of this fixture goes beyond simply progressing in the tournament, it's a matter of righting the wrongs of the past for the Three Lions faithful who have endured so much heartbreak at the hands of Germany.  

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