Not all is as smooth as it looks for the German national team.
Days after Germany dismantled Argentina to reach the World Cup semifinal, defender Philipp Lahm has told a German publication that he wishes to keep the captaincy regardless of Michael Ballack's pending return to the team.
Lahm was given the captain's armband by coach Joachim Loew after Ballack, the longtime captain, was injured playing for Chelsea in the FA Cup final and ruled out of the World Cup. Ballack has since signed with Bayer Leverkusen and has watched the World Cup from the stands.
Lahm, the 26-year-old fullback, and the whole German team have excelled without Ballack during the tournament, making some wonder if they are better off without him.
What do you make of Lahm's statements? Do you think Germany is better off without Ballack? Should Lahm be the captain for the long haul? Do you think this will have any effect on the outcome of Wednesday's match against Spain?
Share your thoughts below.