Keeper Neuer, uncapped striker Nils in Germany’s provisional squad

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Dortmund, May 15 (IANS) Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and uncapped striker Nils Petersen on Tuesday made it to Germany’s 27-member provisional football squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, whereas attacking midfielder Mario Goetze and striker Sandro Wagner were excluded by head coach Joachim Löew.

Neuer’s appointment is a surprise as the goalkeeper has been sidelined with a metatarsal break since September 2017. However, the Bayern Munich goalkeeper will be monitored during the training camp, reports Xinhua news agency.

Uncapped Freiburg striker Petersen received an invitation from the national team after scoring 15 goals in the Bundesliga this season. “Nils Petersen is a great trump card. He has little international experience but he will grow with the task,” Loew said.

Borussia Dortmund’s midfielder Goetze, who scored the winner against Argentina in the 2014 World Cup final, will miss the tournament in Russia due to poor performances in the past season.

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“It wasn’t Mario’s season. He is a great player but he wasn’t in form,” Loew said.

Bayern striker Wagner misses out on the tournament as Loew favoured Stuttgart veteran striker Mario Gomez.

Among others who missed out are Liverpool midfielder Emre Can, who is currently unfit, and young Schalke midfielder Max Meyer.

The title-holders will have to submit their final 23-man squad including three goalkeepers on June 4. After the FIFA deadline, a player can only be replaced if he seriously injures himself 24 hours before the team’s first World Cup match.

Goalkeepers: Bernd Leno (Bayer Leverkusen), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona), Kevin Trapp (Paris Saint-Germain).

Defenders: Jerome Boateng (Bayern Munich), Jonas Hector (Cologne), Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Marvin Plattenhardt (Hertha Berlin), Antonio Rudiger (Chelsea), Niklas Suele (Bayern Munich), Jonathan Tah (Bayer Leverkusen)

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Midfielders: Julian Brandt (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Paris Saint-Germain), Leon Goretzka (Schalke), Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City), Sami Khedira (Juventus), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Mesut Oezil (Arsenal), Sebastian Rudy (Bayern Munich).

Forwards: Mario Gomez (VfB Stuttgart), Thomas Müller (Bayern Munich), Nils Petersen (Freiburg) Marco Reus (Borussia Dortmund), Leroy Sane (Manchester City), Timo Werner (RB Leipzig).

–IANS

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