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Low's new Germany comes at a price

Germany
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Germany boss Joachim Low: Mario Gotze will be in Euro 2016 squad

Mario Gotze, right, has found himself down the pecking order at Bayern Munich recently.

Joachim Low has promised Mario Gotze a place in the Germany squad for Euro 2016 despite his current struggles with Bayern Munich

Gotze, 23, has played only 54 minutes for Bayern since recovering from a groin injury in mid-February and has been linked with a summer exit from the club he joined in 2013.

However, Germany boss Low said Gotze, who scored the winning goal in the 2014 World Cup final, remained firmly in his plans for this summer's tournament in France.

"Mario is in my plans," he told a news conference on Wednesday. "He can be an important player for us. He's got great ability, can play in the tiny spaces. You will be rewarded for supporting Gotze. He can do things others can't do."

Gotze, considered one of Germany's most promising talents in his youth, had looked close to his best this season before sustaining the groin injury on international duty in October.

Germany defender Mats Hummels said this week that his former Borussia Dortmund teammate would be given the support he needs during the international break, and Low added: "I will talk to Mario in the next couple of days.

"I can understand his situation at Bayern in part. He was out injured for a long time, and at Munich you always need to win games. I could see in training that he is not fully back to his old form and fitness."

Low, whose captain Bastian Schweinsteiger may face a battle to return from injury in time for the tournament, also said he will consider including several youngsters in his squad for France.

Schalke's Leroy Sane, Bayern's Joshua Kimmich and Dortmund's Julian Weigl are among those looking to convince Low in the final weeks of the season.

"We will continue to scout our young players in the next few weeks," Low said. "Some of them have left an outstanding impression in the Bundesliga or Champions League. We have a few names on the list, and they are certainly not written off just because they are not here.

"Competition is in full swing. It will be a thrilling race for the squad places, and the young players have put in great performances."

Jonathan Tah is the only new name in the squad for the upcoming friendlies against England and Italy, and Low said the 20-year-old Bayer Leverkusen defender will start one of the two games.

Looking ahead to Saturday's meeting with England in Berlin, Low said Roy Hodgson's new-look squad was reminiscent of Germany's youthful side in 2010, when they reached the World Cup semifinals.

"They've undergone a change in recent years," the Bundestrainer said. "I see parallels with our team in 2010. They are well-organised, are stable at the back and don't concede a lot of goals. England have rejuvenated their squad. They have a good transition, wait for the counter and want to score goals."

England could hand debuts to Danny Rose and Danny Drinkwater at the Olympiastadion, while the likes of Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Jamie Vardy, Eric Dier and John Stones have all been brought in since the 2014 World Cup.

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