“Toni Kroos is an amazing player and one of the most successful players for Germany because he’s won so many trophies. He has won four Champions Leagues, a World Cup, league titles with Bayern Munich and Real Madrid, so he is an amazing player,” Babbel told NetBet. “He has decided to step away and it’s a bit sad because towards the end of his national career he wasn’t playing in his best position. He was playing as a six and Toni Kroos is not a number six, that is what a (Kalvin) Phillips or (Declan) Rice are. They can fight and protect the defense, which is not what Toni Kroos does, he is a fantastic number eight, but for two years he hasn’t been playing there. It’s sad because he’s been criticized and for me, he is one of the greatest players in our history.”
Pushing Joshua Kimmich to right wing-back to accommodate Kroos was point of discussion and controversy among many Germany fans and Babbel can see why. The 48-year-old also thinks how Kroos was used might have played a role in his decision to walk away.
“In the national team you must play your best players in their best positions, and I think (Kroos) struggled because of that,” said Babbel. “It is sad because he’s a fantastic player, but I can understand his decision to say it’s enough.”