Lothar Matthaus believes Germany's current squad is superior to the one he captained to 1990 FIFA World Cup Italy™ glory.

Joachim Low's side, third on the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking behind leaders Spain and Argentina, will book their Brazil 2014 place if they take a point against Republic of Ireland in Cologne on Friday.

The atmosphere in the squad is great. There is no rivalry between players from Bayern Munich and Dortmund.

Lothar Mathaus

Matthaus, who made a record 150 appearances for his country, is backing the current squad to lift the Trophy next summer.

"They are stronger, because there is more depth in the squad," the former midfielder told Cologne newspaper Express. "There are 30 to 35 players, Joachim Loew has double or even triple cover in each position."

Matthaus reckons Germany are well equiped to lift the World Cup for the fourth time following their 1954, 1974 and 1990 triumphs.

"The atmosphere in the squad is great," he said. "There is no rivalry between players from Bayern Munich and Dortmund.

"There is good communication in the team. The conditions are almost perfect to reach the major goal next year."