Germany star Bastian Schweinsteiger is a doubt for his team's round of 16 encounter against England.
The rival nations collide in Bloemfontein on Sunday after Germany topped Group D to book a date against the Three Lions, who progressed on Wednesday after beating Slovenia to finish runners-up in Group C.
But Joachim Low could be dealt a huge blow prior to the clash as it emerged that midfield schemer Schweinsteiger had sustained a thigh injury in his team's defeat of Ghana.
The 25-year-old has played a prominent part in his side's impressive World Cup campaign but was forced off during the closing stages in the win over the Black Stars.
And the Bayern Munich man is facing a race against time to be fit enough to feature against Fabio Capello's team.
Time running out
Assistant coach Hansi Flick said: "He has sustained a thigh injury. The doctors say time is running out but we hope he can play because he is an important player."
Low could be forced to tinker with his starting line-up elsewhere as doubts also emerged over the availability of Jerome Boateng.
The Manchester City summer capture is nursing a calf problem although Mesut Ozil - the playmaker who has caught the eye in South Africa - should be given the all clear.
Ozil twisted his ankle after bagging the stunning winner over Ghana in Johannesburg but has shrugged off the injury.