I don't know how many of you are interested in the shirt numbers players will wear at the Euros but I'm fascinated with this subject. This is the list:
- L. Bender
As was expected all the players that took part in the 2010 World Cup and were chosen for the Euros retained their numbers. Lahm despite playing with No. 21 for Bayern continues to play with No. 16 for Germany, a tradition he started at the 2006 World Cup, as Metzelder, his senior was given his favourite 21. Interestingly when at Euro 2004 Metzelder was absent due to injury, Lahm was making his debut in a major tournament and he wore No. 21. Now that Lahm is officially captain and Metzelder seems to be out of the NT set up, he still kept his faith with No. 16.
I was interested in what the new arrivals would pick. Hummels despite playing with 15 for BvB chose the No.5 for Germany while 15 went to Lars Bender. Schurrle will wear his club's no. 9, Gotze took 19 while Reus will play with 21 - all numbers that could be said suit their position (although in today's game numbers are no longer allocated according to the position as was the case before the introduction of printing the players' name on the shirts). Speaking of which Gundogan has chosen the uncharecteristic for a defensive midfielder number 2. This number has been worn by Marcell Jansen for Germany's last 3 tournaments. I was expecting Schmelzer to inherit this number with Howedes wearing No. 3 and Gundogan given a more traditional number for a midfielder: 4 or 15.
All this will not reflect Germany's performances at the Euro. It's more a question of marketing and the numbers of shirts sold as players get associated with numbers e.g. Klinsmann with 18, Cruyff with 14, CR7 etc... but it will be interesting how players will compare to past greats who wore their number - e.g. 5: Beckenbauer, 13 Muller etc...