BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s young national team need to feel they have the complete trust of their manager to get the job done when they face Serbia in a friendly international on Wednesday before travelling to the Netherlands for their first Euro 2020 qualifier next week.
Coach Joachim Loew has unexpectedly dropped world champions Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and Thomas Mueller, opting to rejuvenate his squad after their first-round exit in the 2018 World Cup in Russia and their shock Nations League relegation.
“We are now face a new time, a new challenge. I have to give the team the feeling that we fully trust them,” Loew told a news conference on Tuesday.
“We have to give them the chance to develop, take over more responsibilities and also during a rough patch offer them solutions when they make mistakes so they have the trust to go into the next months.”
Eight of his 23-man squad are still eligible for national youth teams, including 19-year-old Kai Havertz, Loew said.
Only four have earned 30 caps or more, including the three 2014 World Cup winners left in his squad — keeper Manuel Neuer, Matthias Ginter and Toni Kroos.
One of Germany’s rising stars, Serge Gnabry, will not be fit for the game against Serbia in Wolfsburg, but Loew said the Bayern Munich winger will be available for the match against the Netherlands on Sunday in Amsterdam.
The coach, under mounting pressure following Germany’s worst World Cup result in 80 years, promised a faster team with better finishing – virtues that were missing last year.
“What is important is to have more tempo, more dynamism, more focus up front.”
“I know how to deal with pressure. I can feel what it means in the current position. We have learned from setbacks. We now need to have a completely different attitude from the year 2018.”
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Hugh Lawson)