Germany will host England for a friendly on 22nd March 2017, at Signal Iduna Park. The World Champions will play the Three Lions ahead of their Sunday’s World Cup Qualifier against Azerbaijan at Baku. It is a perfect opportunity for the players to impress their respective coaches. Gareth Southgate will be keen to finalize his squad for the ultimate showdown, whereas Joachim Low will also put his squad through their paces to make his final selection ahead of Sunday’s game. All eyes will be on the warm-up game before the two coaches’ start drawing a rich picture of their team for the showdown in Russia next year.
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The sensational German wingman, Lukas Podolski, will prepare for his final game before he bids farewell to his international career. The 31-year-old will have the honor to captain the side for the first time in his 130 appearances. The former Arsenal and current Galatasaray striker is quite popular among fans and is the third on the table in terms of appearances. The striker has scored 48 goals in international colors for Germany and has come a long way since making his debut at the age of 19 in 2004. After hearing the news that he will be wearing the armband, Podolski said:
'It's the first time I've heard that. It can't be any better for the last game than to run out as captain. I can only say thanks.'
Lukas Podolski will captain injury-hit Germany on his 130th and final international appearance in tonight's friendly against England. pic.twitter.com/znceJILK4D
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Low had this to say on Podolski’s final appearance:
“It will definitely be a nice moment but also a sad moment for me. We have come a long way together, overcome many hurdles. We experienced many disappointments but also the greatest triumph that you can experience as a player or coach, the World Cup win in 2014.”
Raheem Sterling missed the training session due to his own recovery plan, but there is no concern surrounding him. He is completely fit and will be available for Wednesday’s game. There are no injury concerns for Gareth Southgate as he will head to Germany with a fully fit squad. Jermain Defoe will be making his return to England’s squad after four years, whereas the uncapped James Ward-Prowse and Nathan Redmond will be eager to impress the coach.
Joachim Low will be without several key players because of their injuries. The most prominent among all is the show-stopper, Manual Neuer. The Bayern Munich number one has been ruled out of the friendly clash at Dortmund due to his calf injury. He will be staying with Bayern Munich and has withdrawn from the game. The PSG show-stopper, Kevin Trapp, has been called as a replacement for Neuer.
— Germany (@DFB_Team_EN) March 20, 2017