Tag: Germany

Joachim Low: injured Shkodran Mustafi set for “extended layoff”

KAISERSLAUTERN, GERMANY – OCTOBER 08: Shkodran Mustafi of Germany walks injured off the field during the FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier between Germany and Azerbaijan at Fritz-Walter-Stadion on October 8, 2017 in Kaiserslautern, Rhineland-Palatinate. (Photo by Adam Pretty/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Germany national coach Joachim Low says that Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi is expected to be sidelined for some time after the German international was forced to limp out of Germany’s 5-1 World Cup qualifying win over Azerbaijan on Sunday.

Mustafi, 24, pulled up clutching his right thigh in the 36th minute of the match just before Azerbaijan scored their only goal in the match through Ramil Sheydaev and Low later confirmed he sustained a suspected muscle injury.

“With Mustafi it seems that it is some muscle tear or some muscle fibre tear,” Low said. “It looks a bit more serious. In any case it could force him to a longer break.”

Bayern Munich’s Niklas Sule was also substituted in the 22nd minute as a precaution, with Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger coming on in his place.

Having already secured their place in Russia next year with victory over Northern Ireland, Leon Goretzka’s brilliant backheel sent Germany on their way to victory at the Fritz-Walter-Stadion in Kaiserslautern on Sunday. Sandro Wagner also continued his fine form by scoring his fifth goal in five caps as Germany topped Group C.

Despite Seydaev’s equaliser, Azerbaijan fell apart after the break, conceding three times in 12 minutes from Wagner, Antonio Rudiger and Goretzka, with Emre Can adding a stunning late fifth.

Germany finished 11 points clear of Northern Ireland, whom they beat 3-1 in Belfast on Thursday to reach Russia, with a 100% record.

But on club level, with Laurent Koscielny having pulled out of France’s squad last week with an achilles injury and Calum Chambers yet to feature this season due to a hip problem, any enforced absence would be a potential headache for Arsene Wenger before Saturday’s trip to Watford.

Carlo Ancelotti insists Thomas Muller has place in Bayern

Bayern Munich manager Carlo Ancelotti has insisted that Thomas Muller still has a place in his side.

Muller, 27, started in 16 of a possible 24 matches for the Bavarian club during the first half of this season – but only playing the full 90 minutes on nine occasions and scoring just three goals in all competitions. He also failed to score for Germany at Euro 2016.

His lacking performance as of late gradually caught the scrutiny of many, with Bayern legend Lothar Matthaus telling Sport Bild mid-week he believed there was “no place for Muller in Ancelotti’s system.”

Ancelotti had since came into the defense of his player, saying: “I’ve said repeatedly that he’s a very intelligent player. He’ll always find a position on the pitch. He’s played a lot of games so far and will play a lot of games in the second half of the season. Nothing has changed.”

Reacting to Matthaus’ comments, Muller, who ended his scoring drought in the Bundesliga after 999 minutes with a goal in their 5-0 home win against Wolfsburg in December said: “Everyone is entitled to their opinion.”

“After the Leipzig game it was laid on a plate for him. Personally, I can’t deny I would have hoped for a goal or two more, but I expect to score more goals in 2017. I am not going to lose my head over it, especially after what the coach said.”

“That only confirms my feeling – that the coach definitely has a spot for me. And when I look back on my first days back in training, I’ve scored in every session so far. It’s looking good for the second half of the season. 2017 will be a good year.”

The Bundesliga will remain in hiatus until January 20, after which Bayern will face SC Freiburg in the first fixture as the German league resumes.

Torsten Frings announced as new Darmstadt coach


Former Germany international midfielder Torsten Frings has been named the new head coach of Bundesliga struggling team SV Darmstadt 98.

The 40-year-old has put pen to paper on an 18-month deal through to June 2018 and takes up the reins from Norbert Meier’s interim successor Ramon Berndroth.

“I’m delighted that the responsible parties at Darmstadt have put their faith in me,” Frings said at his unveiling.

“I’m itching to get going at this special club, who are a great match for my personality.”

Frings, who made 402 Bundesliga appearances as a player for SV Werder Bremen, Borussia Dortmund and FC Bayern Munich, acquired his coaching license during his time as assistant coach to Viktor Skripnik at Bremen since October 2014.

He was out of work since being dismissed as assistant coach of Werder Bremen together with boss Skripnik in September, and Darmstadt is his first position as head coach.

Nonetheless, the 40-year-old will have his work cut out with a side who are sitting at the bottom of the Bundesliga, eight points adrift of outright safety.

Darmstadt had been searching for a new coach after dismissing Norbert Meier in early December and promoting Ramon Berndroth as interim coach. However, their fortunes did not change for the better as Berndroth lost all three of his games in charge.

Darmstadt will hope to turn the corner with Frings leading his first training session on January 3, in preparation for the second half of the season.

The Lilies resume their Bundesliga campaign at home to 1. FC Koln on 21 January.