With the Euros fast approaching, the fallout from Joachim Low’s decision to call back Thomas Muller and Mats Hummels to the national team is sparking fresh retrospection on Germany’s struggles for the past couple of years. Bayern Munich legend Bastian Schweinsteiger took aim at his former boss, criticizing his decisions in the past few years.
Speaking to ARD (as captured by Sport Bild), the 2014 World Cup winner spoke about the direction of the DFB following the 2018 World Cup debacle. “The path that was taken after the 2018 World Cup, you have to say, it failed. Many players have also not used the chances that they got in the national team.”
Schweinsteiger didn’t name any names, but we have a pretty decent idea of who he’s talking about. Julian Draxler, Jonathan Tah, and Julian Brandt were just some of the underperforming players axed from the setup right before the Euros. The decision has not been controversial, but it does expose Low’s farcical argument that he was trying to “develop” a young new team for the Euros. Being forced to bring back Muller and Hummels after two years of exile basically puts Germany back at square one, but without the rhythm and chemistry they would’ve had if Low had just kept them on the squad from the start.
Speaking of which, Schweinsteiger spoke about his former teammates as well. He had always been in favor of them being called back to the squad, and says they will play a key role in the upcoming tournament.
“Both of them will play a leading role. I don’t think either of them are players who will sit on the bench,” was his verdict, and he’s probably right. Low didn’t swallow his pride by calling up Muller and Hummels only to leave them on the bench in the tournament proper. They will certainly play, and hopefully they’ll help bring back the spark that’s been missing from Germany for many years now. If not, then a group stage exit may be the most likely outcome.