Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Borussia-Park, Mönchengladbach

"It was a farewell that Bastian richly deserved."

Max Meyer 55', Paulus Arajuuri 77' (og)

Germany kick-off their international schedule for 2016/2017, but the match itself takes a distant second-place as international football bids farewell to a German legend.

Out of a youthful starting eleven, however, Jogi in particular singles Max Meyer out for praise.

Emotional Schweinsteiger farewell ends in 2-0 win

Germany beat Finland 2-0 in emotional Schweinsteiger swansong

Germany top Finland in Bastian Schweinsteiger's international farewell

Meyer shines as emotional Schweinsteiger bows out

"[Bastian] served the national team for twelve years and without him, our success in this time wouldn't have been possible. In the big tournaments we almost always reached the semi-finals. I always felt assured when he was on the pitch because he's a player with leadership qualities who isn't afraid to take on responsibility. I'll miss him, not just as a footballer but as a person and because of his great sportsmanship. The game gave us a glimpse of the future as matches like these provide the younger players a chance and we are of course already planning for the World Cup in 2018. Today's plan was to give minutes to those players who weren't used at the Euros." - from

Joachim Löw spoke further about his captain:
"Before the game and also when he was substituted I was very touched. I had many thoughts all of those years together go through my head. Basti has always had fantastic football abilities, with the World Cup final in 2014 being a true case in point. That aside, his human qualities, honesty and fairness have always impressed me. He has never shown any selfishness despite having to sometimes grit his teeth. He has always put the team ahead of himself and without Basti we would not have been as successful. He is a great player and a great person."

Löw: "A glimpse into the future"
Speaking of the young players who played that night, Jogi said he was especially impressed with goalscorer Max Meyer "Technically he is a very, very good player. He is taking some big steps, which he also showed at the Olympics. He's got a great passing game." and added "They acquitted themselves well and were heavily involved in the game. It was like a glimpse into the future. For some of the players it was their first or one of their first international games. I will always use these kinds of games to give young players international experience."

Asked about Mario Götze, he replied "He had a lot of influence on the game and worked very hard. He was still lacking a little bit of sharpness and movement, but he's not 100% fit yet. He will need a couple of more games under his belt to get some rhythm. Nevertheless he was very valuable to the side last night."

Player ratings and stats from

ZDF's coverage of the match in full, and Joachim Löw's post match interview

Match highlights from

Post-match press conference

Danke, Basti!

Bastian's farewell letter in which he thanks "My coaches, especially Joachim Löw, under his leadership I've become a better and more mature international player."

Starting Line-Up:
Marc-André ter Stegen (Bernd Leno), Joshua Kimmich, Shkodran Mustafi, Niklas Süle (Jonathan Tah), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Julian Weigl), Karim Bellarabi, Max Meyer, Jonas Hector (Mesut Özil), Julian Brandt (Thomas Müller), Kevin Volland, Mario Götze

Niklas Süle makes his debut for the national team tonight.

Löw: "Einer der Größten überhaupt" - 31 August 2016
Jogi speaks to ZDF about Bastian Schweinsteiger

Training, Düsseldorf, 30 August 2016

Erstes Nationalmannschaftstraining ohne Löw - 29 August 2016
A training session took place in the evening, with only eight players present. The rest of the squad remained in the hotel, with Jogi, for a regeneration session.

Ankunft der Spieler - from

Press Conference, Düsseldorf, 29 August 2016

In his first press conference of the new season, Jogi arrived smiling and looking tanned, and spoke of, for the first time since he became Bundestrainer, three tournaments for the German national team in three years.

Germany hope to take experimental squad to Confederations Cup

"We won't have all players at this tournament," Low explained ahead of Wednesday's friendly against Finland. "Three tournaments in three years would not be ideal."
"I want to use the Confed Cup to field a team with prospects."
"There are a few promising players, who, I believe, will be able to play an important role for us in the and I'd like to introduce them to the team. The door is wide open for them. Next year we have the Confederations Cup and I'd like to use it as a platform to gauge our future development. Our goal at the 2018 World Cup is to defend our title. At the Confederations Cup we won't necessarily have all of the players who will be with us at the 2018 World Cup. Three tournaments in a row for some players won't be ideal."

"The style of play and the development of the Olympic team really pleased me, therefore I've called up players like Niklas Süle, Max Meyer and Julian Brandt to the first team. These players will get the chance to play on Wednesday. After consulting (DFB sporting director) Hansi Flick, one or two players will then go back to their club teams on Thursday because they have all worked hard in the last few weeks."

Jogi said he had spoken to Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel who has said that Mario Götze is not quite match fit which is why he did not play for Dortmund at the weekend. Mario was also carrying a slight knock but he completed the final training session ahead of the Bundesliga season opener. "I know that he is fit and has already made up for the sessions he has missed. He will be able to gain some match practise with us."

He confirmed that André Schürrle will not be involved with the squad due to a muscle problem, which is primarily a precautionary measure. "The main focus for us is the World Cup qualification game against Norway. After a short amount of preparation time and just one Bundesliga game, it is therefore important to share the workload."

Jogi commended Bastian Schweinsteiger and Lukas Podolski on the careers with the national team and spoke of the planned farewells for them "Both players contacted me at the start of August and informed me of their decisions. The timing is right for them. Both players have shaped this team and have become world champions. It's the greatest honour you can achieve as a footballer. It's good that they now want to once again concentrate on their club football. I agreed for them to have a farewell game on the spot because both have given an extraordinary amount to this team and its progression, both on and off the field. Lukas Podolski is injured unfortunately, but he will most likely play in his farewell match next March. I've managed both of them now for 12 years and they've given a lot to the national team in that time. They were held in very regard. There are always these kinds of changes after a big tournament. With Bastian and Lukas we lose two great players, but it opens the door for new players to take their chance and make an impact."

Löw to name successor to captain Schweinsteiger after Finland game

"On Wednesday Bastian will be the captain," Löw said. "So on Wednesday it's not a topic."
"I will announce my decision after the match against Finland, so on Thursday. I want to speak to speak to the team first and share the decision that I have already made with them. On Wednesday, Bastian Schweinsteiger will captain the team against Finland. For me, the decision of who is captain isn't so important. We have a functioning team council and these players take on a lot of responsibility. It's important for me to have more counterparts who are important to me and are accepted in the team. When a place becomes free in the team council, Toni Kroos will be promoted to the post. He has been part of the team for a long time and has also developed well as a person."

"Our next exciting task is obviously qualification for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. When we all parted after the European Championship in France, I gave myself and my coaching staff the task of analysing every match one more time. After the next two matches we will meet up and compile everything together to carry out an extensive analysis. We can carry out a deeper analysis of the match using new technical data. In the last few years we've worked hard on breaking down defensive opponents. At the Euro's we have already shown that we can play against defensive sides. There was nothing new at the European Championship, I didn't see any teams do anything completely new. We have given ourselves two main things to work on. Firstly, we have to make the most of our chances. Secondly, we have to work on our transition from attack to defence. We are a team that often has a lot of possession. We have to learn to get forward quicker after we have won the ball. We want to improve that over the next two years."

The appointment of Stefan Kuntz as the new manager of the U21 team: "I haven't been able to talk to new manager Stefan Kuntz yet but I will be able to soon. I've known him for a long time and completed my training course with him in Köln. His appointment as U21 Head Coach is a good decision."

Kinder können nicht ins Stadion: Jogi kritisiert späte Anstoßzeit
Asked about the low ticket sales for the match, he said that it has always been that friendlies are less popular with the German public. He believed that perhaps that factor could be attributed to late kick-off time - discouraging families from attending.

With thanks to  Mercedes photograph thanks to the DFB Instagram account.

Schürrle sagt für Länderspiele ab
Andre Schürrle will miss the international break due to a back injury. Jogi has not yet decided if will call up a replacement. - 28 August 2016

Löw informiert Team über Kapitän
Joachim Löw will not announce the name of his new captain until he has met with the players who arrive tomorrow afternoon, and as such the name will not be known at his press conference which is scheduled for 13.00 German time.

Joachim Löw has named his squad for the first international break of the 2016/2017 season, and has included three players from the silver-medal winning Olympic team. - 26 August 2016

Speaking on, he said:
"Max Meyer and Julian Brandt have played for the national team before and we would like to get to know Niklas Süle better. These three players have earned their call ups with their excellent performances. I think they consider the call up as a motivation and an incentive to carry on delivering good performances. We hope that players like this continue to develop as they have a lot of potential. The door to the national team is open. I'm sure that over the next few months more players will get a chance."
European Championship 2016 squad players Jérome Boateng, Mario Gomez, Antonio Rüdiger and Leroy Sané have not received a call-up. Marco Reus and Ilkay Gündogan also don't feature as they are still recovering from injuries sustained at the Euros. Despite this, eleven players who won the 2014 World Cup with Germany remain in the national squad. Löw spoke on his squad selection, he said, "Our goal is to build a team who will be able to win the World Cup in Russia. We have a lot of experienced players in our squad who provide the framework and take on responsibility. But at the same time we want to give younger players the chance to prove themselves."

The match will be a chance for fans to say goodbye to Bastian Schweinsteiger.
"We are losing the captain and backbone of our team with Basti," said Joachim Löw. "He was an important player on and off the pitch as well as for me personally. His departure will leave a hole in the side. However we have more established and experienced players. I expect and I know that they will take on more responsibility."
"We want to say goodbye to Basti and thank him with our fans for everything he has done for the national team. He has abundant merits for the DFB, German football and our team. The match against Finland should get us in the mood for the World Cup qualifier against Norway." - from - 26 August 2016

The full squad:
Goalkeepers: Bernd Leno (Bayer Leverkusen), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Marc-André ter Stegen (Barcelona)
Defenders: Emre Can (Liverpool), Jonas Hector (Köln), Benedikt Höwedes (Schalke), Mats Hummels, Joshua Kimmich (both Bayern Munich), Shkodran Mustafi (signed to Arsenal from Valencia on 27 August), Niklas Süle (Hoffenheim), Jonathan Tah (Bayer Leverkusen)
Midfield/Forwards: Karim Bellarabi, Julian Brandt, Kevin Volland (all Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Wolfsburg), Sami Khedira (Juventus), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Max Meyer (Schalke), Thomas Müller (Bayern Munich), Mesut Özil (Arsenal), André Schürrle, Julian Weigl, Mario Götze (all Borussia Dortmund), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Manchester United)

Last updated 9 September 2016
With thanks to everyone on the Group, especially Lucille, Silke, Susanne, Delmy and Debbie.
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