PREVIEW: Huth suffers Euro set-back as Germany take on Switzerland
Middlesbrough defender Robert Huth's hopes of making Germany's Euro squad received a set-back on Monday as he had to withdraw from Wednesday's friendly in Basle against Euro co-hosts Switzerland.
24 March 2008
Basle, Switzerland (dpa) - Middlesbrough defender Robert Huth's hopes of making Germany's Euro squad received a set-back on Monday as he had to withdraw from Wednesday's friendly in Basle against Euro co-hosts Switzerland.
The 23-year-old, who last played for Germany during the 2006 World Cup, was examined by German team doctors in the Swiss city late Sunday and on Monday it was decided that he would not be available for his country's last friendly before Germany coach Joachim Loew announces his Euro squad.
Loew said he would not call up a replacement for the Premiership- based player.
The coach has however given a lifeline to returnees Stefan Kiessling, Clemens Fritz and Marcell Jansen.
The Bayern defender Jansen has not played for Germany since undergoing an operation in November, while Kiessling has played just once before.
"Stefan showed in the Bundesliga and in the UEFA Cup that he is a good striker. That is why he should be given the chance to show what he can do in the national team," Loew said.
Although it is just a friendly, Loew has called up three veteran goalkeepers in Jens Lehmann (Arsenal), Timo Hildebrand (Valencia) and Robert Enke (Hanover 96), dismissing calls to give youngsters Rene Adler (Leverkusen) and Manuel Neuer (Schalke) a chance.
"We want to have a chat to all three goalkeepers and spend some time analyzing the situation ahead of Euro," Loew explained.
The former Stuttgart coach did, however, leave the door open for Adler and Neuer. "I have never said that these are my three goalkeepers for Euro.
"We will keep watching all goalkeepers. First we have the game against Switzerland and then we still have a few weeks before we have to announce the squad.
"I have always said that players could always be called up at the last moment if their performances were really good."
Loew will have to play the match against Switzerland without regulars Torsten Frings (Werder Bremen) and Christoph Metzelder (Real Madrid).
Bundesliga-based Swiss striker Alexander Frei, who returns to the Swiss side after a lengthy injury lay-off, is confident that his team will be able to match Germany.
"The Swiss team has developed an enormous potential since the World Cup. I am happy that I am a part of this. Playing against Germany will be a highlight," said Frei, who is one of six Bundesliga-based players in coach Kobi Kuehn's national squad.