Kaymer picks Germany 3-1 over Klinsmann's US side
If Martin Kaymer's prognostication is as good as his putting, the United States is in big trouble in its World Cup football showdown against Germany.
Germany's Kaymer, who won the US Open by eight strokes Sunday at Pinehurst for his second major golf title, predicted his homeland's side would defeat the Americans, coached by German legend Jurgen Klinsmann, by 3-1 when they meet on June 26 in their final first-round Group G match in Brazil.
"I think you are a little bit the underdog," Kaymer said. "USA, you're not as bad as people make you. I wouldn't say you guys have a chance to win the World Cup, but I think it's not a given for Germany. My bet would be 3-1 for Germany."
Kaymer, who finished on nine-under 279 for the second-best 72-hole score in US Open history, noted how the US team has several players with dual US-German citizenship as well as Klinsmann, who made a strong run guiding the German side on home soil in the 2006 World Cup.
"You have two Germans on your team, you have a German coach, and he has been very successful with our team in 2006," Kaymer said.
Kaymer was exchanging text messages with one of the German football players, whom he did not identify, as the Germans were preparing for their World Cup opener Monday against Portugal.
It came during Kaymer's triumphant run, which saw him start with back-to-back 65s -- his 130 the lowest 36-hole score in US Open history.
"I was texting with one player the other day," Kaymer said. "He said, 'Very well done so far. The whole national team wishes you all the best for the weekend.'
"I said, 'Well, it's only halftime.' He said, 'Well, I would take that lead at halftime against Portugal.'
"So if they were to score eight times, obviously it's fairly unrealistic, but the most important thing is that they win. If it's only one, that's OK."
Kaymer was also excited to see that Germany's passion for the World Cup squad did not totally crowd his historic triumph off the German news websites.
"I was on the German webpage and for the first time there was my name in the short news," Kaymer said. "I was very surprised because golf is not as big as football.
"And especially now playing the World Cup, I thought it would be full of just football players. So that meant a lot to me, knowing that there's more attention."