Löw to test German World Cup hopefuls in France friendly

Germany's friendly against France on Tuesday offers Joachim Löw a chance of revenge, but the coach appears to be looking forward to the 2018 World Cup rather than back at Euro 2016.

Löw to test German World Cup hopefuls in France friendly
Joachim Löw. Photo: DPA

“There are certain players that I want to see tested against the best,” Löw said ahead of the meeting in Cologne with Les Bleus, whose 2-0 victory in the Euro semifinals was Germany's last defeat.

Löw sees this week's matches, against England and France, as a chance to try things out in preparation for the World Cup. He plans to use the spring internationals, against Spain and Brazil, to bed in his lineup for Russia.

“England and France are the measuring sticks for us,” Löw said Friday evening after the world champions drew 0-0 at Wembley. “I want to see where certain players are. That was more important than the result.”

“I think France are a little better than England,” he said. “France have an extremely fast attack and midfield and are more dangerous in front of goal than England.”

At Wembley, Germany dominated the first half and created several chances but faded in the second half.

“We need to move forward quicker after winning the ball,” Löw said.

“That's something we need to work on.”

On Tuesday, Loew will test some players whose places in the World Cup squad are not assured, such as fullbacks Marcel Halstenberg of Leipzig and Marvin Plattenhardt of Hertha Berlin. He is also keen to see strikers Amin Younes of Ajax and Lars Stindl of Mönchengladbach against the French.

Löw is also likely to recall several World Cup winners: Toni Kroos and Sami Khedira, who were rested against England, and the man who scored the 2014 World Cup winning goal Mario Götze, who is returning after a long struggle with injury and illness.

Since losing to France in the Euros, Germany are unbeaten in 20 matches, three short of their record, set between 1979 and 1980. 

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British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.