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Ozil, Draxler, Gomez Out Of England Clash



Germany will be without Mesut Ozil, Julian Draxler and Mario Gomez for Wednesday’s friendly match with England, Joachim Low has confirmed.
Arsenal star Ozil has failed to recover from the hamstring problem that kept him out of the Gunners’ last Premier League match against West Brom.
Paris Saint-Germain attacking midfielder Draxler and Wolfsburg striker Gomez will also sit out the match with minor injuries.
Head coach Low, who has already seen Manuel Neuer return to Bayern Munich for treatment on a calf problem, would not say whether the attacking trio will be available for Sunday’s World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan.
“Neuer is injured, Ozil has muscular problems, Draxler has a slight muscular problem. Gomez also has a slight injury,” he told a news conference. “They won’t play.”
Germany surrendered a 2-0 lead to lose 3-2 to England when they last met in a pre-Euro 2016 friendly in Berlin last March.
Low believes England are going through a transition phase under Gareth Southgate in the wake of their shock defeat to Iceland in the finals last year, but is wary of the danger they could pose on the counter-attack.
“England are in flux,” he said. “They now look for more of a possession game. They have very good players, good on the counter.”
Lukas Podolski, who will play his final international match at Signal Iduna Park on Wednesday, added: “I don’t know what the difference is between Germany and England.
“We have had a great coach for the past 10 years. We started on a path in 2004.
“Club football is very strong in England, they have a lot of good young individual players.”

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and the country’s most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022.

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