Bender in buoyant mood

And Lahm reflects on faultless run through 'Group of Death'

Lars Bender: On target as Germany saw off Denmark on Sunday

Philipp Lahm: Believes Germany are playing to their full potential

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Lars Bender is delighted to have played his part in Germany's impressive progress through Euro 2012, with their sights now set on the top prize.

Joachim Low's side arrived in Poland and Ukraine among the favourites to claim continental glory after picking up maximum points in qualification.

That run has continued at the main event, with Germany set to be the only side in the quarter-finals with a faultless group record.

Three wins from three in the so-called 'Group of Death' saw Low's men ease through, with Portugal, Holland and Denmark put to the sword.

Bender was among the goals as they secured a 2-1 victory over the Danes on Sunday, and the 23-year-old Bayern Leverkusen midfielder is determined to hold on to an unfamiliar role at right-back.

"It's true that I'm not used to playing in the position, but I played there in our warm-up matches for this tournament and I did well," he said.

"The manager believes in me and that's why I felt very much at ease playing there, but my feet are firmly on the ground.


"I'm glad I got the opportunity and topped off my performance with a goal, which got us the win.

"That's the biggest source of pleasure for me, but, of course, it's not certain that I'll be playing in the starting team."

Bender's fellow full-back Philipp Lahm is also pleased to have blazed a trail through Euro 2012, with the Germany skipper happy to see Low's squad performing to their potential.

On their passage through the group stage, he said: "All the games were difficult, but three games, three wins, we've walked through the group.

"We have backed up our billing for the group stage and confirmed what we've been working on in recent years.

"It hasn't just come of its own accord, we have a lot of quality in our squad, we've said that from the start, and we've shown that again."