Thomas Muller believes he has shown himself to be worthy of a Germany recall but will for now "take it easy" as he continues to star for Bayern Munich.

Muller - along with Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels - was dropped by Joachim Low following Germany's disappointing 2018 World Cup campaign.

The Bayern forward has not featured for his country since, with Low standing by his decision.

The Germany coach said last month Muller "is a great player, no question" but "the future belongs to the young players".

Those comments have done little to quell speculation about a potential return for the 31-year-old ahead of the European Championships at the end of the season, however.

"Hopefully the tournament will take place next year," Muller told ZDF after Bayern's 4-0 win over Atletico Madrid, in which he assisted the fourth goal for Kingsley Coman.

"Everyone can see that I am in good shape. We don't need to say more about it. We'll take it easy and then we'll see what happens."

Muller had a key role in Bayern's treble success in 2019-20 with a record-breaking contribution to their latest Bundesliga title triumph.

His tally of 21 assists surpassed Kevin De Bruyne's Bundesliga benchmark, while he posted career-high, league-leading figures for chances created (84) and big chances created (31).

Muller has been similarly impressive at the start of the new season, too, topping the charts again for assists (four), chances created (16) and big chances created (six) through four top-flight games.

Against Atleti, the first match in Bayern's Champions League defence, Muller played three key passes - second only to two-goal star performer Coman.

Hansi Flick has given no thought to the prospect of coaching Germany as well as Bayern Munich, insisting he is focusing only on the present.

Germany boss Joachim Low has come in for criticism in recent times as Die Mannschaft have continued to struggle for consistent results.

Low's men claimed their first win since last November's Euro 2020 qualifiers when they beat Ukraine 2-1 in the Nations League on Saturday.

However, that result was sandwiched by 3-3 draws in a friendly with Turkey and a Nations League game against Switzerland.

Low has come under increasing scrutiny but Flick, his assistant during Germany's triumphant 2014 World Cup campaign, has been quick to spring to his defence.

When asked about the possibility of coaching both Germany and Bayern at a media conference, Flick replied: "Are you serious? Doing national coach a bit on the side?

"I live in the here and now. I have a lot of fun preparing the team for the tasks ahead. Everything else is the future. I look at myself.

"Jogi Low did an excellent job. We all in the Bundesliga have to help train top players. We have enough work to do and have to support the national coach."

Bayern face Arminia Bielefeld on Saturday as their squad deal with a packed schedule. Flick's men beat Duren 3-0 in the first round of the DFB-Pokal on Thursday.

Flick added that he "assumes everyone is ready", with a host of players returning to training following international duty.

The defending champions are fourth in the Bundesliga with six points from three games, a point behind RB Leipzig, Augsburg and Eintracht Frankfurt.

Hansi Flick believes Joachim Low does not deserve to be criticised despite Germany's shaky form and pointed to the lack of a natural centre-forward in the team.

Bayern Munich coach Flick previously served as Low's assistant for their 2014 World Cup win and then moved into the role of DFB sporting director.

He is therefore well placed to assess the national team, who have drawn four of their five matches in 2020, edging Ukraine in their other fixture.

Low - coach since 2006 - is under pressure as a result, but he has Flick's backing.

"Overall, I think the criticism is too harsh," Flick said ahead of Bayern's DFB-Pokal clash with Duren. "The work Jogi Low is doing is sensational.

"He is a great coach. That's why we should remain objective and try to do things together."

Despite Germany scoring three times against both Turkey and Switzerland but failing to win, Flick believes Low is clearly short in the striking department.

Miroslav Klose, Germany's record goalscorer and the World Cup's all-time leading marksman, is now Flick's assistant.

"This was already a big topic when I was sporting director and it still is a big topic: there is no real central striker in Germany," Flick said.

"Up front we have Serge Gnabry and Timo Werner, but they are far away from being a classic central striker.

"I have an amazing striker in my staff, Miro Klose. If he trains a few weeks, he should be fit to play. But I would prefer to keep him, I need him."

Germany's Toni Kroos made his 100th international appearance in a 3-3 draw with Switzerland on Tuesday, but insisted he cares more for results than the number of games he plays.

Serge Gnabry's superb finish on the hour secured a point in Nations League Group A4 for Germany, who had to come from two goals down in Cologne.

Switzerland raced into a 2-0 lead through Mario Gavranovic and Remo Freuler, though Timo Werner swiftly pulled one back before Kai Havertz equalised.

Gavranovic's second put Switzerland back ahead, only for Gnabry to restore parity once more with his 14th international goal since November 2016.

Though Kroos made a landmark appearance, his error ultimately led to Switzerland's second goal, and though content with reaching a century of caps, the 30-year-old said winning titles means much more to him than personal accolades.

"It was of course a special game for me. To have reached 100, that's a nice mark. But anyone who knows me knows that I care more about results and titles than appearances," Kroos said.

"But of course, 100 games is something nice. In the past I have played with incredibly good footballers and guys. I hope that we can build on these successes with the current team.

"Our problem was the first 10 or 15 minutes. After that we played a good game and improved our footballing skills to the last game. In the end we are not satisfied with the point because we aim to win the game."

Kroos is one of the old guard in Germany's squad, with Joachim Low having stood by his decision not to select Mats Hummels and Thomas Muller, despite the latter's sensational form for Bayern Munich.

Havertz, who took his goal brilliantly and looked sharp alongside his Chelsea team-mate Werner, believes the comeback is a step in the right direction for Germany, who have managed just one win so far in 2020.

"We came back after many setbacks, we showed our morals," Havertz said.

"We are in a process, we have a young team. We will not be dissuaded from our path and will keep trying. We have to defend more intelligently, but we saw good beginnings today."

Head coach Low added: "The game was incredibly intense. Both teams risked a lot, but also made a lot of mistakes. 

"We got into the game badly, then we showed very good morale. That was certainly positive. But we made some mistakes at the back. We consciously risked a lot, made mistakes, we have to fix that."

Germany boss Joachim Low says Timo Werner is fully fit for their Nations League clash with Switzerland on Tuesday.

Chelsea striker Werner missed his country's 3-3 friendly draw with Turkey on Wednesday after suffering from flu but was fit enough to come off the bench for the final 10 minutes of Saturday's 2-1 Nations League win over Ukraine.

While Werner looks set to make his 33rd international appearance in Cologne, Low says there are fitness doubts over Julian Draxler, Lukas Klostermann and Marcel Halstenberg.

"Timo Werner is back to full strength and there are no weaknesses," Low told a media conference on Monday. "He is available.

"But we have small question marks. Draxler has an Achilles problem, Halstenberg is dealing with adductors and Klostermann has knee problems."

Germany have struggled in recent months, with the win over Ukraine marking their first taste of victory in four games.

That has led to criticism of Low and his tactics, most notably from 1990 World Cup winner Lothar Matthaus, who says Germany need to adopt a "different mentality".

Low brushed off the comments, though, and expects his side to deliver a strong performance against the Swiss.

"There are different opinions in football," Low said in response to Matthaus' remarks. "The experts have to express their opinions and that is completely fine and certainly not lacking respect. What is important is that we criticise ourselves internally, and we do that.

"I expect concentration, more precision, courage and the right attacking accents [against Switzerland]. It will be a completely different game than against Ukraine. The Swiss can defend extremely well."

Germany head coach Joachim Low was not completely satisfied with his team's 2-1 victory against Ukraine as they won a Nations League match for the first time.

For the first time in seven attempts, Germany celebrated a Nations League triumph thanks to goals from Matthias Ginter and Leon Goretzka in Kiev on Saturday.

Germany led 2-0 after 49 minutes before Ruslan Malinovskiy's 76th-minute penalty gave Ukraine hope, but the visitors held on.

After winning for the first time when opening the scoring in 2020, having drawn on the previous three such instances, Low told reporters: "I'm happy that we won the game.

"Before we conceded, we could have been 3-0 or 4-0 up. The penalty was unnecessary. One positive is that we allowed them few chances from open play.

"We did, however, give the ball away too easily on occasion though. They were tired after it went 2-0. We played with some stability tonight.

"When we play with three at the back, we need active players, who tie up the opposition and play passes forward. We played too many long balls in the first half.

"I won't make many changes to the starting XI against Switzerland if nothing changes."

Ginter broke the deadlock in the 20th minute when he turned in a cross from Antonio Rudiger, and Goretzka made it 2-0 four minutes into the second half courtesy of a Georgi Bushchan blunder.

Germany defender Niklas Sule gave away a penalty with 14 minutes remaining, and Malinovskiy converted following Ukraine's minimal threat.

The result snapped Ukraine's streak of seven successive home competitive wins.

Ginter added: "We are pleased to have won. That's important for the journey we are on. We weren’t at our best tonight and it was a bit close towards the end. I try to remain ambitious every day and to give my all. I'm pleased that this hard work paid off tonight.

"We lost the ball too often in the first half and made too many sloppy mistakes. We knew that Ukraine would be strong on the break and wanted to avoid this happening. You rarely see so many simple errors in the national team."

Germany head coach Joachim Low said he was "p***** off" at his team for surrendering a lead three times in their 3-3 draw with Turkey and dismissed fatigue as an excuse.

Kenan Karaman scored in stoppage time in Wednesday's friendly to cancel out Gian-Luca Waldschmidt's 81st-minute strike and leave the hosts winless in three games in 2020.

Julian Draxler and debutant Florian Neuhaus had also put Germany in front earlier in the match, only for Ozan Tufan and Efecan Karaca to hit back both times.

Germany also squandered one-goal leads in their 1-1 draw with Spain and Switzerland last month, and Low admitted it is an issue that his side must rectify.

"The problem has been around for a long time," he said at his post-match news conference. "This team, which has never played together like this, cannot be blamed. 

"That has happened to the other players as well. I am disappointed and p***** off, that is the right word."

Germany made eight changes to their starting line-up from their most recent match and had limited time on the training pitch given the tight fixture schedule.

However, Low was not looking for excuses after a third draw on the spin in Cologne, where just over 300 fans were in attendance.

"Fatigue cannot be a reason, it is not an excuse or an explanation," he said. 

"It's about losing control of the game, exploiting opportunities, simply losing the ball in zones where you don't always have to play across the pitch. 

"When it comes to organising after losing the ball, we also have open positions that the opponent can use. 

"When making the assignment, we have to say: In the box there is man against man, there is no space coverage. Concentration and mentality also play a role.

"[Karaman] was completely alone in the penalty area. Under no circumstances should that happen. We did this now and in a few other games. We have to talk about it.

"What can we do better when we have the lead? We then want to develop a mentality from this."

Draxler, given the captain's armband in the absence of Manuel Neuer, agreed with Low's assessment that Germany only had themselves to blame.

"We invited the Turks to score goals and again we didn't manage to get the result over the line," he told RTL. 

"You just have to play it more confidently. It's disappointing. In the end, it's about winning the games - and we did not do that."

One positive for Low on an otherwise disappointing day was Neuhaus' debut goal, the Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder tucking in after combining with Kai Havertz.

"He had a good debut. He had a lot of good actions, especially when it came to goal, where he slipped very nicely into the corner," Low said.

Germany face Ukraine and Switzerland in their next two Nations League outings on Saturday and Tuesday respectively.

Joachim Low has welcomed two new names to his Germany squad for the upcoming international break, where eight players - including Bayern Munich's treble-winners - will sit out the friendly against Turkey.

Germany face Turkey on October 7, before a Nations League double-header with Ukraine and Switzerland.

Borussia Dortmund's Mahmoud Dahoud and Borussia Monchengladbach's Jonas Hofmann - both former under-21 internationals - could each make their senior debuts.

They appear likely to get their opportunities, alongside Hofmann's uncapped club colleague Florian Neuhaus, in the first match against Turkey due to the absence of a number of high-profile stars.

Announcing the squad on Friday, the DFB said Bayern's Manuel Neuer, Niklas Sule, Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka and Serge Gnabry, plus Lukas Klostermann, Marcel Halstenberg and Toni Kroos, would only play the Nations League fixtures.

Such limitations contribute to a large 29-man group, which includes new Chelsea signings Kai Havertz and Timo Werner.

Leroy Sane, Thilo Kehrer and Marc-Andre ter Stegen are all out due to injury, while Ilkay Gundogan has not featured for Manchester City since contracting coronavirus last month and is also not involved here.

Germany are third in their Nations League group, having drawn their opening two matches against Spain and Switzerland.


Germany squad in full:

Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Bernd Leno (Arsenal), Kevin Trapp (Eintracht Frankfurt); Emre Can (Borussia Dortmund), Matthias Ginter (Borussia Monchengladbach), Robin Gosens (Atalanta), Marcel Halstenberg (RB Leipzig), Benjamin Henrichs (RB Leipzig), Lukas Klostermann (RB Leipzig), Robin Koch (Leeds United), Antonio Rudiger (Chelsea), Nico Schulz (Borussia Dortmund), Niklas Stark (Hertha Berlin), Niklas Sule (Bayern Munich), Jonathan Tah (Bayer Leverkusen); Nadiem Amiri (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Brandt (Borussia Dortmund), Mahmoud Dahoud (Borussia Dortmund), Julian Draxler (Paris Saint-Germain), Leon Goretzka (Bayern Munich), Kai Havertz (Chelsea), Jonas Hofmann (Borussia Monchengladbach), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Florian Neuhaus (Borussia Monchengladbach), Suat Serdar (Schalke); Serge Gnabry (Bayern Munich), Luca Waldschmidt (Benfica), Timo Werner (Chelsea).

Joachim Low felt some of his Germany side not being in rhythm of competition played a factor in their 1-1 Nations League draw against Switzerland.

Germany are still waiting for a first Nations League win after they followed a 1-1 draw with Spain on Thursday with the same result in Basle on Sunday.

Ilkay Gundogan gave Germany a 14th-minute lead but they spurned several chances to add to their advantage and were eventually punished by Silvan Widmer's second-half equaliser.

Germany are two points adrift of Spain in Group A4 and head coach Low felt a team missing several members of Bayern Munich's treble-winning side did not deserve any more than a point.

"As against Spain, we failed to score the second goal, which would have given us security," he told ZDF.

"Twice in a row we've led 1-0, and twice we're not bringing home anything. We had some good chances, but we let Switzerland come back in the second half. 

"We lost too many balls, and the draw makes sense. Some players were not in the rhythm of the competition, some players were absent.

"The Swiss had nothing to lose in the second half, they gave everything."

Midfielder Toni Kroos echoed his coach's sentiments, adding: "When there are six points to take and we only take two, yes, it's disappointing. 

"Unfortunately, it was a bit the same scenario as against Spain. We have to work to find more solutions when the opponent is playing very high.

"We need players who want the ball, even when we are under pressure."

Kai Havertz's move from Bayer Leverkusen to Chelsea is bad for the Bundesliga, according to Germany boss Joachim Low.

Germany allowed Havertz to leave their training camp in Stuttgart on Friday to complete a switch to Chelsea, where he signed a five-year contract.

The Blues also raided the Bundesliga for RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner, with Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell, Thiago Silva and Malang Sarr having also arrived at Stamford Bridge as reinforcements for the 2020-21 season.

Low was disappointed to see Havertz leave the Bundesliga but hopes playing abroad can help him have a bigger impact with the national team.

"I see it as a negative when such great talents like Kai are no longer in the Bundesliga," Low told a news conference on Saturday.

"But I also see the positives. Abroad, the players develop their personalities.

"I think the time is right for Kai, and the same goes for Werner. If they take the next step that will of course help us too."

Havertz was an unused substitute in Germany's 1-1 draw with Spain in the Nations League on Thursday, with Low not playing him due to his Chelsea transfer not being completed at that point.

"Kai was torn. Kai would have been good for us in the second half against Spain, but I also knew his situation," said Low.

"He would have liked to have played for the national team, but in such situations, when a transfer is imminent, you have to be careful."

Germany will be without Havertz when they face Switzerland on Sunday but Low expects to have every other player available, having confirmed Leroy Sane did not suffer a muscle injury against Spain.

"Bernd Leno will be in goal. For everyone else, I'll wait for training," said Low.

"I told Leroy we weren't taking any risks. He did not suffer any muscular injuries, but it was not to be expected that he would last the 90 minutes.

"Switzerland's development has been very good since 2014, including as individuals. They are now one of the big players. I see parallels between Switzerland and Spain in terms of the style of play."

Thomas Muller shone for Bayern Munich last season but Germany boss Joachim Low is not planning to recall him.

Low announced Muller, Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels would not be selected again after Germany failed to get out of the group stage at the 2018 World Cup.

However, the Bayern attacking midfielder rediscovered his best form under Hansi Flick last season, accumulating a record-breaking 20 assists as the Bavarian giants stormed to an eighth straight Bundesliga title.

Bayern went on to clinch a treble by winning the DFB-Pokal and Champions League, with Muller playing a starring role in the 8-2 humiliation of Barcelona in the quarter-finals of Europe's premier club competition.

However, Low does not intend to bring the 30-year-old back into the international fold any time soon.

"Thomas Muller is a great player, no question about it, but I trust the boys," Low said following a 1-1 draw against Spain on Thursday.

"I just believe that the future belongs to the young players and they simply need time and space to develop.

"We have coped with the upheaval quite well, so I'll stick to my opinion."

However, with the coronavirus pandemic meaning the 2020-21 season is set to suffer from heavy fixture congestion ahead of the delayed Euro 2020, Low refused to completely rule out the idea of a return for Muller.

"I don't think [the schedule is] okay. The amount of games has an impact on health, fitness and quality. It simply isn't bearable for many years," said Low.

"That's why I'm extremely sensitive. If you don't act wisely and pay attention, we will have big problems in March, April, May. I try to prevent that.

He added: "I'm not a clairvoyant who looks into the future and knows what will happen in March, April. Next year there might be a few injuries and then you can change your mind. But at the moment I don't see that."

Germany forward Timo Werner was left annoyed following his team's last-gasp 1-1 draw against Spain in the Nations League.

Werner had Germany on track for victory in Stuttgart on Thursday, but Jose Gaya snatched a 95th-minute equaliser for Spain in Group 4 of League A.

Chelsea star Werner, who is preparing for his first season at Stamford Bridge after arriving from RB Leipzig, crowned a wonderful team move in the 51st minute.

However, Spain debutant Ferran Torres got to the right byline and Gaya smuggled home a finish from Rodrigo Moreno's header down at the death.

"It's annoying because we put so much into the match, we worked so hard," Werner said post-match.

"After the goal we allowed ourselves to get pegged back a little too much."

The result left Germany still searching for their first Nations League victory after drawing two and losing two in the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2018-19.

Germany head coach Joachim Low added: "I am satisfied with what I saw. Our boys gave it their all right to the end.

"It was an intense and hard-fought match – both teams put a lot into the match.

"For me, it was important not to let Spain play and in my opinion we had the better chances. In the second half it was tough to keep the pressure up."

Atalanta star Robin Gosens also made his debut for Germany, setting up Werner's goal, and he told UEFA.com: "It was a very special night, my first cap. Playing in a back three as I am used to from Atalanta makes it easier for me.

"My part is covering the entire left flank and I am pleased with the way we played as a team and the part I played."

Germany forward Timo Werner was left annoyed following his team's last-gasp 1-1 draw against Spain in the Nations League.

Werner had Germany on track for victory in Stuttgart on Thursday, but Jose Gaya snatched a 95th-minute equaliser for Spain in Group 4 of League A.

Chelsea star Werner, who is preparing for his first season at Stamford Bridge after arriving from RB Leipzig, crowned a wonderful team move in the 51st minute.

However, Spain debutant Ferran Torres got to the right byline and Gaya smuggled home a finish from Rodrigo Moreno's header down at the death.

"It's annoying because we put so much into the match, we worked so hard," Werner said post-match.

"After the goal we allowed ourselves to get pegged back a little too much."

The result left Germany still searching for their first Nations League victory after drawing two and losing two in the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2018-19.

Germany head coach Joachim Low added: "I am satisfied with what I saw. Our boys gave it their all right to the end.

"It was an intense and hard-fought match – both teams put a lot into the match.

"For me, it was important not to let Spain play and in my opinion we had the better chances. In the second half it was tough to keep the pressure up."

Atalanta star Robin Gosens also made his debut for Germany, setting up Werner's goal, and he told UEFA.com: "It was a very special night, my first cap. Playing in a back three as I am used to from Atalanta makes it easier for me.

"My part is covering the entire left flank and I am pleased with the way we played as a team and the part I played."

Joachim Low has confirmed Robin Gosens will make his Germany debut against Spain, while Leroy Sane and Niklas Sule will also start Thursday's Nations League clash.

Gosens has been included in Low's 22-man squad for the games with Spain and Switzerland after impressing for Atalanta last season in Serie A and the Champions League.

With Nico Schulz and Jonas Hector absent, the 26-year-old Gosens will slot straight into the side at left-back for Germany's first outing in 10 months.

Low also confirmed Sule and Sane will be part of the XI after recovering from long-term injuries, with the latter's last start coming in August 2019 for former club Manchester City.

Elsewhere, Kevin Trapp will deputise for Manuel Neuer in goal, with the majority of Bayern Munich's treble-winning squad being given time off after reaching the Champions League final.

"Robin Gosens will definitely be in the starting 11. He's in good form and has played well," Low said at Wednesday's pre-match news conference. 

"Kevin Trapp will be in goal. I'm also planning on starting Leroy Sane and Niklas Sule.

"I'm not sure whether we can make three or five subs. In any case, we have to look at the training rhythm and match fitness of the players. Not everyone can play 90 minutes."

Germany face a tough start to their Nations League campaign with Spain the visitors to the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Stuttgart on Thursday, followed by a trip to Switzerland.

Despite the awkward timing of the fixtures, Low insisted his players will be well up for the Group A4 match against a Spain side unbeaten in their last 11 matches.

"The players are very motivated and that's very gratifying," he said. "Even if the timing is not ideal, it is good that things are going on again with us. 

"Even if there has been a change of coach in recent times, Spain are still playing at a very high level. 

"They don't play quite the way they used to. They can also cross and have long-distance shooters. They are good pressers and have set the benchmark." 

Joachim Low believes Manuel Neuer's Champions League final performance shows he would have deserved the 2020 Ballon d'Or ahead of Bayern Munich team-mate Robert Lewandowski.

France Football announced it would not present its annual award for the world's best player this year due to the coronavirus pandemic which halted some domestic competitions in 2019-20, including Ligue 1.

The decision has prompted suggestions Lewandowski has been harshly treated, having appeared the standout candidate to succeed Lionel Messi after his 55 goals fired Bayern to a stunning treble.

The striker, who was named Germany's Footballer of the Year, last week agreed he deserved the global honour.

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge claimed earlier in August hope was not lost as FIFA had promised there would be a vote for the world's best player.

But Low, the Germany head coach, claims Bayern captain Neuer should pip Lewandowski to any award.

The goalkeeper was outstanding in the 1-0 Champions League triumph over Paris Saint-Germain, keeping Neymar and Kylian Mbappe at bay.

"Manu was in great shape throughout the 2019-20 season," Low told Kicker. "Manu is in a class of his own. Crazy, unbelievable.

"I have nothing against Robert Lewandowski - he is a top-class goalscorer - but, for me, the world's best footballer this year would be Manuel Neuer.

"What he has just done in this final round in Lisbon... He kept the door closed at the back.

"He had a very large role in winning the Champions League. Manuel was on hand in difficult situations against Lyon and Paris, otherwise it might be 0-1 or 1-1.

"You have the feeling that he is omnipresent."

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