Lahm out to avoid more World Cup woe

Germany captain Philipp Lahm leads his country into next month's FIFA World Cup determined to avoid another near-miss.

The three-time winners have finished third at each of the last two World Cups and progressed to the final in 2002, only to lose to Brazil.

Further disappointment has come in the UEFA European Championships, where Germany lost the 2008 showpiece to Spain before succumbing to Italy in the last four in 2012.

Defender Lahm is weary of suffering disappointment in the latter stages of major tournaments, and is keen to ensure that Germany will be lifting the famous World Cup trophy in Brazil on July 13.

"I do not want to go out in the semi-finals again or visit Brazil to soak up the sun," he told Bild.

"I have a clear goal, to achieve the biggest possible success and win the World Cup. We have the necessary punch to win the title, but we must be sure that the talent and ego of every individual provides only for the team's benefit."

However, Lahm believes Germany must improve their defence if they to reach that goal.

"We have to work, especially on our defence," Lahm added.

"Recently, we have conceded far too many goals and allowed our opponents too many chances. We must pay more attention to our defensive formation and the whole team is needed for that."

Germany have been drawn in Group G for the World Cup and will open their campaign against Portugal on June 16, before taking on Ghana and the United States.