- Germany first participated in international matches in 1908 and originally encountered England in a 3-3 friendly in 1930.
Thus, begun a rivalry which has seen drama and controversy down the years, but exists almost entirely in the minds of the English, for whom it is a national pastime.
In fact, most Germans view the Netherlands as their major international sporting rivals.
As Gary Lineker once said "Football is a simple game; 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans win." But this wasn't always the case.
England started brightly in the 30's and even beat the German team 6-3 in Berlin at a match crucial to Chamberlain's "Peace in Our Time" pact with Hitler - a game which saw the England players ill-advisedly giving the Nazi salute.
Germany still hadn't beaten England by the time the '66 World Cup came around, losing to them in the final.
It wasn't until a friendly in 1968 that they managed their first win and, despite trailing 2-0 in a quarter-final of the 1970 World Cup, eventually deposed the World Champions in extra time. Germany were on the up.
During the 70s, 80s & 90s Germany were having the best of all the important matches. Penalties decided a brace of semi-finals ('90 World Cup and Euro '96) and, despite a rare England win at Euro 2000, normal service was resumed when Germany won the last ever game played at the old Wembley 4 months later which prompted Kevin Keegan's resignation as manager.
The 5-1 mauling England inflicted on Germany in Munich in 2001 was a false dawn for the English supporters and while both teams qualified for the 2002 World Cup it was the Germans who went further.
Unsurprisingly England capitulated once more during the 2010 World Cup which echoed '66 and its goal line controversy, but ultimately Lineker's words rang true as the Germans ran out 4-1 winners. Germany had had the last laugh once more.
Head to head
- * Match was concluded via extra time, penalties or both.