Germany can call upon the experience of two World champions once again, as Toni Kroos (Real Madrid) and Matthias Ginter (Borussia Mönchengladbach) are back in the squad once again. After being out injured, Leon Goretzka (Bayern München), Jonas Hector (1. FC Köln) and Nico Schulz (Borussia Dortmund) have also been called up. In total, head coach Joachum Löw has named three goalkeepers and 21 outfield players in his squad ahead of Germany’s final two EURO qualifiers against Belarus in Mönchengladbach on 16th November (20:45 CET) and Northern Ireland in Frankfurt on 19th November (20:45 CET).
Julian Draxler, Marcel Halstenberg, Thilo Kehrer, Antonio Rüdiger, Leroy Sané, Niklas Sulé and Kevin Trapp have all been left out of the squad due to injury or because of a lack of game time. Die Mannschaft will meet in Düsseldorf on Tuesday in order to get the preparations underway ahead of both EURO qualifiers on home soil.
“First and foremost, it’s about qualifying for the European Championship next year,” said Joachim Löw. “As a result, we want to win against Belarus and Northern Ireland, two teams who will bring the fight to us. I would have preferred that we be a bit further along in our development, as we are still a young team. In the midst of a rebuild, it’s important to have a certain level on continuity. But, due to all the injuries we’ve been dealt, we haven’t been able to really get into a rhythm. It’s extremely important that Toni Kroos is back, as he is a key figure within the team. He’s one of the pillars of our team, together with Manuel Neuer, Ilkay Gündogan, Marco Reus and Joshua Kimmich. Overall, we are fully convinced that the players that we have will be able to deliver, and they deserve our undivided attention.”
Löw continued, and added: “We would love to see plenty of fans fill the stadiums in Mönchengladbach and Frankfurt. The younger players in particular can draw on the support of our fans. Regardless of the results, we want to do everything we can to make the fans happy and end the year on a high.”
Germany have won each of their EURO qualifiers against Belarus and Northern Ireland so far (2-0 each time). Overall, Germany and Northern Ireland have faced each other 18 times, with Germany winning 12 matches, drawing four times and losing just twice. Germany have faced Belarus just twice before, winning their most recent meeting this year (2-0) and drawing 2-2 in 2008.
Germany are currently in second place in Group C with 15 points, behind only the Netherlands. While the Dutch are level on points with Germany, they have the edge on goal difference. Northern Ireland currently have 12 points, while Belarus have four. Estonia are at the bottom of the table with just one point.