Soccer-Fancied Germany are World Cup outsiders in home poll

Reuters

BERLIN, May 14 (Reuters) - Despite being considered one of the title favourites at next month's World Cup, only about one in 20 Germans believe the side can lift the trophy, according to poll published in Stern magazine on Wednesday.

The poll of a representative sample of 1,002 people revealed only six percent thought coach Joachim Loew's team can end an 18-year trophy drought at the tournament in Brazil.

About one in 10 believe Germany will reach the final while 41 percent think the journey will end at the semi-final stage. About one in four think they will go out in the quarter-finals.

The Germans, whose last trophy win was at Euro 96, are drawn in Group G with Ghana, Portugal and the United States with almost all of those polled certain they will advance to the knockout phase.

Only two percent said they will not make it out of the group.

Home fans are not convinced the team can challenge for the World Cup with only two strikers - 35-year-old World Cup stalwart Miroslav Klose and the untested Kevin Volland.

There are also doubts over the stability of the central defence with a perception that the talented squad lacks natural leaders capable of shouldering expectations of a success-starved population.

The poll was conducted on May 8 and 9 by the Forsa Institute on behalf of the magazine and after the announcement of the 30-man provisional squad.

Loew will reduce it to 25 or 26 later on Wednesday before submitting his final 23-member squad by June 2. (Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by John O'Brien)

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