With Euro 2020 just around the corner, teams are starting to announce their final squads for the tournament. The likes of Poland and Belgium have already finalized their rosters, with Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski unsurprisingly captaining the former.
Now the big question is, who will be included in Germany’s 26-man shortlist?
There has been a bit of speculation about who will accompany Joachim Low to the Euro finals, with recent reports suggesting that even the ‘retired’ Thomas Muller is highly likely to get a late ticket into the squad. However, judging from Low’s selections so far, we can assume that he will not make that many changes otherwise. Muller and Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels will likely be the standout exceptions, while the rest of the squad will probably not look too different from what Low has shown us so far.
So, without further ado, here is a quick prediction of who will be included in the final roster, position by position. Considering most squads are named with two to three players from each position, we will assume that Germany will take three goalkeepers, nine defenders, ten midfielders, and four forwards.
This one is pretty straightforward. Manuel Neuer will almost certainly captain Die Mannschaft as he has done so for the past three years. Coming off another stellar season with Bayern, Neuer will most likely be one of the first names on the list. Neuer’s main backup, Marc-Andre ter Stegen, will miss the tournament after going through a knee operation. His replacement could be Bernd Leno of Arsenal, with Kevin Trapp of Eintracht Frankfurt filling in the third goalkeeper spot.
Let’s start with the right backs. RB Leipzig’s Lukas Klostermann could well start on the right side of defense at the tournament, having done so in two out of Germany’s last three games. Dortmund’s Emre Can could also have a sniff at right-back, or at center-back, depending on what formation Germany play.
In the middle of defense, Low has opted for the likes of Borussia Monchengladbach’s Matthias Ginter, Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger, Bayern’s Niklas Sule, and Bayer Leverkusen’s Jonathan Tah. The lineup will most likely not change from these players. But perhaps the most interesting inclusion will be Mats Hummels, although it is still unclear as to whether he will make the final cut. Considering he is currently Dortmund’s best defender, however, it would be foolish to ignore his skill and experience. Per Florian Plettenberg from Sport1, Hummels will indeed make his comeback, so we shall see.
At left back, Leipzig’s Marcel Halstenberg could make his return, having missed the last few international matches due to injury and quarantine. He would be joined by Robin Gosens of Atalanta, who has been a favorite pick of Low in the past few months. Dortmund’s Nico Schulz is also a contender, but considering he hasn’t been selected for the last five international games, it would be a surprise if he is included.
Germany has some of the most talented midfielders in the world, so this could be a bit of a selection headache. In central midfield, Bayern’s Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka have proven to be a formidable duo, so expect their names to be at the top of Low’s list. Manchester City’s Ilkay Gundogan has also had a great season, steering City to the top of the Premier League and the Champions League final. All three names are more or less a given, but Goretzka may be slightly delayed in joining the team due to a muscle injury. The same goes for Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos, who tested posItive for COVID-19. Once these troubles are over, though, they are fully expected to make the squad.
Now here’s where it becomes a bit more difficult. Barring the four names already on the list, who will fill the remaining six spots? Let’s take a short trip down memory lane to see who Low has picked so far. Dortmund’s Julian Brandt seems almost certain to make the list, considering he now wears the coveted No. 10 shirt for Germany. Chelsea’s Kai Havertz, who wore the 10 briefly during his last call-up, is also more than likely to join the squad.
With four spots remaining, I will make a couple of bold predictions, and say Brandt’s Dortmund teammate Mahmoud Dahoud will join the team. He has apparently been on fire for Dortmund in their recent hot run of form, in which they clinched Champions League qualification with a game to spare and won the DFB-Pokal. I would have also thought Marco Reus would have had a shot at a spot, but he himself declared that he would not be joining the team, so his spot may go to youngster Florian Wirtz or Nadiem Amiri, both of Leverkusen. The other two spots might be filled with Florian Neuhaus of Gladbach, and Jamal Musiala of Bayern. The latter may be a bit of a stretch, but he chose the German national team because he knew he would get some big shots. This might be his first.
With all their talent in midfield, Germany has suffered from a severe lack of firepower in recent years. But if we look past that, it looks certain that Bayern duo Serge Gnabry and Leroy Sane will join the team. The two will need a serious boost if they want to prove themselves at this year’s Euros. The same can be said for Chelsea’s Timo Werner, who has been misfiring for club and country ever since he landed in London.
What better way to inspire some, well, inspiration in these misfits than a healthy dose of experience? If the rumors are true, Thomas Muller will also be called back to the national team after three years, hoping to prove his coach’s initial decision to axe him wrong. It remains to be seen where and how exactly Muller will fit into this current Germany team, but if his form for Bayern is proof of anything, it’s that Muller is hungry and raring to go.
To sum up, here is who I think Low will take to the Euros:
- Manuel Neuer (captain): GK
- Lukas Klostermann: DF
- Robin Gosens: DF
- Matthias Ginter: DF
- Mats Hummels: DF
- Joshua Kimmich: MF
- Kai Havertz: MF
- Toni Kroos: MF
- Timo Werner: FW
- Julian Brandt: MF
- Nadiem Amiri/Florian Wirtz: MF
- Kevin Trapp: GK
- Thomas Muller: FW
- Florian Neuhaus: MF
- Niklas Sule: DF
- Antonio Rudiger: DF
- Jonathan Tah: DF
- Leon Goretzka: MF
- Leroy Sane: FW
- Serge Gnabry: FW
- Ilkay Gundogan: MF
- Bernd Leno: GK
- Emre Can: DF
- Marcel Halstenberg: DF
- Mahmoud Dahoud: MF
- Jamal Musiala: MF
As we all know, Germany has a lot riding on this tournament, with their recent failures at the 2018 World Cup and the last two Nations League campaigns still fresh in their minds. Whether this will be the squad that takes them to glory, or lets them crash and burn for the fourth time in three years, remains to be seen.
Who do you think will make Jogi Low’s list? Let us know in the comments!