German coach Joachim Löw has announced his squad for Wednesday evening's friendly against France. Mario Gomez returns to the squad after injury, while Rene Adler will mind the net after over two years' absence.
Joachim Löw announced on Friday that Hamburg keeper Rene Adler, who is enjoying an excellent comeback season after over a year out injured, would start on Wednesday against France. Adler was in the squad, but on the bench, for Germany's last friendly against the Netherlands.
"Rene Adler played a very strong first half of the league season in the Bundesliga," Löw said. After he returned to our rotation against the Netherlands, he has now earned the chance to show us what he can do against France."
Adler has not played for Germany since November 17, 2010, when he kept a clean sheet in a goalless draw against Sweden.
"In the decisive World Cup qualifiers in March we will again put our trust in Manuel Neuer," Löw also said. "At the moment he is our clear number one."
The move was something of a slight for young German keepers Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Ron-Robert Zieler, both of whom have struggled somewhat this season compared to their stellar form in the previous Bundesliga campaign.
Gomez to lead the line once more?
The other major returnee is Bayern Munich striker Mario Gomez, who was out injured for around three months at the start of the season. Löw did not specify whether Gomez or veteran Miroslav Klose would start the game against France, however.
"Mario Gomez is back into good physical condition after his lengthy injury," Löw said. "Just like Miroslav Klose, he fills all the requirements for a central striker and lets us implement our football philosophy. I am convinced that his experience and his qualities will lead to him again proving himself at the highest level."
Bundesliga top scorer Stefan Kiessling of Bayer Leverkusen did not make the cut.
Bayern Munich defender Holger Badstuber, who might miss the entire season with ligament damage, was the only notable absentee from the squad with injury. Broadly speaking, Bundesliga players are currently in good shape owing to the month-long winter break that helped them recuperate from knocks taken in the first half of the season.
Most of the German internationals will be in action in the Bundesliga this weekend; Werder Bremen entertain Hannover in the first match on Friday evening. Second-placed Bayer Leverkusen host defending champions Borussia Dortmund, themselves in third, on Sunday evening in the highest profile fixture.
Here is the full German squad for the Wednesday, February 6 friendly in Paris:
Goalkeepers: Rene Adler, Manuel Neuer
Defenders: Jerome Boateng, Benedikt Höwedes, Mats Hummels, Philipp Lahm, Per Mertesacker, Marcel Schmelzer, Heiko Westermann
Midfielders: Lars Bender, Julian Draxler, Mario Götze, Ilkay Güdogan, Sami Khedira, Toni Kroos, Thomas Müller, Mesut Özil, Lukas Podolski, Marco Reus, Andre Schürrle, Bastian Schweinsteiger
Forwards: Mario Gomez, Miroslav Klose