Mats Hummels and Thomas Muller will not feature for Germany against Austria, as Joachim Low instead assesses players who may not yet be assured of a World Cup place.
The reigning champions play their first warm-up friendly for Russia 2018 in Klagenfurt on Saturday, with Low’s 23-man squad for the finals to be confirmed at the start of next week.
And the Germany coach, while yet to settle on a starting XI, does not see the benefit of using players at this stage who featured heavily in qualifying and endured long club seasons.
Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer will make his long-awaited return from injury, while Marco Reus will play, but Hummels and Muller are not to be involved.
Out of the squad
“If there’s one thing I haven’t thought about it’s the starting line-up [for Austria]. We have tested a few things out against the Under-20s and among ourselves,” Low said.
“Mats Hummels and Thomas Muller have had a lot of games with us – we know what to expect – which is why we’re leaving them behind for the Austria game,” he added.
Low is planning to talk his decisions through with the players involved, but some calls have already been made – as suggested by the absence of certain stars for the weekend.