Real Madrid midfielder Kroos withdraws from Germany squad

By Sports Desk March 23, 2021

Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos has withdrawn from the Germany squad for their upcoming fixtures because of an adductor injury.

The 31-year-old linked up with his national side on Monday for the World Cup qualifiers with Iceland, Romania and North Macedonia.

However, Germany confirmed on Tuesday that Kroos has returned to Madrid as a precautionary measure and will play no part in any of their games over the next eight days.

"Our medical department has examined and treated Toni intensively," said head coach Joachim Low, who will step down from his position at the end of the rescheduled Euro 2020 tournament.

"He would have liked to stay with us, and I am reluctant to be without him. But with a view to the Euros, we decided that the full recovery from this injury must be a priority."

Kroos earned his 100th cap for Germany in October's 3-3 draw with Switzerland and has featured 35 times in all competitions for Madrid this season.

He previously missed two games earlier this season with a gluteal injury, seeing him play no part in the league wins over Real Valladolid and Levante.

Germany are also without Niklas Sule and Robin Gosens for Thursday's clash with Iceland in Duisburg, the pair unavailable with thigh and muscular problems respectively.

The build-up to the match has been dominated by talk of who will succeed Low as the next Germany head coach, but Manuel Neuer insists it will be business as usual on the field.

"We had a short team meeting and are concentrating on our tasks," he said. "We have to be well prepared for the European Championship and will use every game to do that.

"We cannot make any more mistakes. We have a strong group, against some strong opponents, so every game is a final from the start.

"Of course now we want to crown this era with a success. The coach deserves that to end with a success after the successful years.

"He is is very motivated and ambitious. It's not that he thinks he's going to retire. He's enthusiastic. He wants to quit as national coach as successfully as possible."

Under-21s boss Stefan Kuntz is among the frontrunners to replace Low, who has been at the helm since 2006 and guided his country to World Cup success in 2014.

Ralf Rangnick and Hansi Flick, who manages Neuer at club level with Bayern, are also in the running, while Jurgen Klopp and Julian Nagelsmann have distanced themselves.

Asked about the candidates for one of the top jobs in football, Neuer said: "A national coach must have experience and must have done one or the other in German football. 

"He should know the Bundesliga. It's not about what we think, but about the goals that we have in front of us."

Related items

  • Rumour Has It: City near £100m Grealish deal, Saul eyes Premier League move Rumour Has It: City near £100m Grealish deal, Saul eyes Premier League move

    Manchester City still hope to sign Tottenham and England striker Harry Kane in the coming days.

    The Premier League champions appear likely to add his international team-mate first, with Jack Grealish reportedly close to a move to the Etihad Stadium.

    Aston Villa have tabled a contract to keep their star man, but City are prepared to spend big to win his signature.

     

    TOP STORY - CITY CLOSE ON GREALISH DEAL

    Manchester City are set to complete a £100million move for Jack Grealish in the next few days, according to multiple reports

    The Mail says the 25-year-old England international will earn more than £200,000 a week upon joining Pep Guardiola's side. 

    Though City are expected to cut ties with some veteran players, adding Grealish will have no impact on their longstanding pursuit of Harry Kane, the Sun reports.

     

    ROUND-UP

    - Saul Niguez is weighing up a move to the Premier League, with the Mirror reporting Manchester United and Liverpool are possibilities for the Atletico Madrid midfielder in a £35-£40m deal. 

    - Barcelona and Atletico Madrid are possibilities for Bernardo Silva if he leaves City in the coming weeks, reports the Mail. 

    - Atalanta centre-back Cristian Romero wants to join Tottenham but the clubs are having difficulty reaching an agreement, reports Fabrizio Romano. 

    - Brazilian striker Kaio Jorge is set for a €3m (£2.5m) permanent move to Juventus from Santos and is expected to sign through to 2026, reports Romano. 

    - Arsenal and Everton have shown interest in Schalke's Matthew Hoppe after the USA international's strong Gold Cup performance, reports US journalist Grant Wahl.

    - Talks between Wolves and Adama Traore have broken down and Leeds could swoop for the winger, reports Goal. 

    - Brighton are interested in Benfica striker and Urugay international Darwin Nunez, reports the Mail. 

  • Barcelona boss Koeman praises Depay-Griezmann connection after Stuttgart success Barcelona boss Koeman praises Depay-Griezmann connection after Stuttgart success

    Ronald Koeman was delighted with the connection between Memphis Depay and Antoine Griezmann during Barcelona’s 3-0 win over Stuttgart on Saturday.

    Barca maintained their perfect pre-season record, making it three wins from three at the Mercedes-Benz Arena.

    Depay, who joined the La Liga giants on a free transfer in June after his departure from Lyon, opened the scoring against the Bundesliga outfit in emphatic fashion after 21 minutes.

    The Dutchman controlled Frenkie de Jong’s diagonal ball into the box, before flicking it over the head of defender Pascal Stenzel and firing past Fabian Bredlow in the Stuttgart goal.

    Following his second goal in as many games, Depay then played a key role as Barca doubled the lead 15 minutes later - a clever backheel releasing Griezmann to cross for youngster Yusuf Demir to tap home.

    Koeman praised the impact of his compatriot and was particularly impressed by his link-up with the France star.

    "Surely people know what Memphis is about," he said.

    "He has been at [Manchester] United, the last few years at Lyon and above all, he has shown himself to be a goalscorer. 

    "He showed [that quality] with his goal, strength and speed he brings to the team.

    "His connection with Antoine is very good and that gives us a lot.

    "They are two players who can play in different positions in the attack. We're going to have competition."

  • Nagelsmann confident Goretzka will extend Bayern contract Nagelsmann confident Goretzka will extend Bayern contract

    Julian Nagelsmann is confident Leon Goretzka can be persuaded to sign a new contract with Bayern Munich and has suggested fellow midfielder Corentin Tolisso still has a future at the club.

    Goretzka has less than a year to run on his existing deal with the German champions and has been touted as a possible target for Manchester United and Real Madrid.

    The 26-year-old scored five goals and provided the same number of assists in 24 Bundesliga games last season, while also playing a direct part in four Champions League goals.

    Recently-appointed boss Nagelsmann has already stressed he is eager to keep Goretzka at the Allianz Arena, but contract talks with the midfielder are out of his hands.

    "I'm not involved enough that I have a say every day. I stay out of these issues," Nagelsmann said. "Of course I have talked to him about my plans for him.

    "I've told him I'd be happy if he extended and I'm also confident. There are several topics involved when it comes to discussing a contract extension.

    "I'll continue to focus on the sports side of things and show him he can be one of the most dangerous midfielders in Europe. He has potential to get even better."

     

    Goretzka is not alone in being linked with a move away from Bavaria, with France international midfielder Tolisso reportedly seeking a fresh start.

    But Nagelsmann has left the door open for Tolisso, who will become a free agent next year, to prove himself this season on the back of a disappointing 2020-21 campaign.

    "He is currently in isolation in France. I'm looking forward to when he returns and trains with the team," Nagelsmann said. 

    "His contract situation is known to everyone. I assume that when he's healthy again, he'll be part of this team."

    Nagelsmann was speaking on the back of Bayern's 3-0 friendly defeat to Napoli, making it three losses and one draw in his first four games in charge.

    He has had to make do without a number of players that have been away on international duty, though big-hitters Robert Lewandowski, Serge Gnabry and Goretzka returned on Saturday.

    The former RB Leipzig boss is not concerned about results so far, however, and has hinted Bayern could yet strengthen before the transfer window closes.

    "I said before that I'm taking over a well-functioning team," Nagelsmann added. "But I haven't had the full team yet. 

    "On Monday we will be complete when others return, and then it's about finding the rhythm in training"

    "I'm not worried about these scores. I think the first half today was good. We had control and played well, but we didn't manage to create a lot of chances in the final third. 

    "The goals we conceded were annoying, but that can't really be a reference because we made a lot of changes

    "Our task as a club is to always observe the market. We have a good squad, but we can always improve it. Every coach in the world wants the best possible team."

    Kingsley Coman sustained a bruised rib in the loss to Napoli, but Nagelsmann confirmed at his post-match news conference that he does not expect the Frenchman to be out for long.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.