Premier League quartet set to boost misfiring Germany


Berlin (AFP) – The late arrival of a quartet of Premier League stars is set to give Germany a timely boost as head coach Joachim Loew looks to fix his misfiring side in their final preparations for Euro 2020.

The Chelsea trio of Champions League winners Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Antonio Ruediger, as well as Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan, had all joined the squad by Thursday.

They were given extra time off after Saturday’s European final.

Their arrival boosts the Loew’s side, who hit the woodwork twice with 16 shots on goal as Wednesday’s friendly against Denmark finished in a disappointing 1-1 draw.

Loew is running out of time to get Germany ready to face world champions France on June 15 in their opening game of the European Championship before facing holders Portugal four days later in Group F.

“The problem has been with us for a long time,” Loew said after Germany’s lack of finishing was again an issue Wednesday.

“We create a variety of opportunities, but we don’t reward ourselves. We have to work on that.”

Loew has praised Havertz, who showed his “enormous quality” with the goal which decided Chelsea’s win in the Champions League final.

The 21-year-old attacking midfielder gives an extra option up front, while City’s top-scorer Gundogan is a potent attacking threat in central midfield.

However, Werner joins the camp having often struggled to take his chances this season, yet Germany’s lack of finishing also remains an issue.

Apart from the opening goal by Borussia Moenchengladbach midfielder Florian Neuhaus midweek, Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich could both only hit the crossbar. 

Loew expects to have his full squad together for the first time Friday and admits there is plenty to do before Monday’s final warm-up friendly against Latvia.

Germany must tighten their three-man defence in order to contain France’s star-studded attack led by Kylian Mbappe, who scored in a 3-0 friendly win over ten-man Wales.

“We have to put in a few intensive sessions before the Latvia game,” said Loew.

“We can also work on communication on the pitch,” he added as Mueller’s was often the lone German voice heard against Denmark.

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