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Schweinsteiger defends balance in Germany squad

By Football News



Germany's squad selection has come under scrutiny ahead of Friday's FIFA World Cup qualifier against Kazakhstan.

Head coach Joachim Loew has been criticised for naming a squad dominated by two clubs, with 12 out of 23 players coming from the Bundesliga's top two sides, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund.

Since that squad was named, three players have pulled out through injury, while Real Madrid's Sami Khedira is in doubt after suffering an ankle problem in training on Tuesday.

Bastian Schweinsteiger missed last month's friendly against France with a similar issue, but looks set to be fit for the clash in Astana.

And the Bayern midfielder has defended Loew's selection policy.

"I do not think that a coach sets up his team so that six players come from one club," Schweinsteiger said.

"But it is an advantage because you know each other very well. Here in the national team there are many players from Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich.

"However, that is not the reason for how the coach might plan to set up the team. Sometimes this is an advantage. But we have so much quality in the squad and intelligence that it would make no difference."

If the 28-year-old does take the field against Kazakhstan, it will be his 98th appearance for his country.

Only eight players in history have represented Germany 100 times or more.

Schweinsteiger could then pick up cap number 99 when the Group C leaders welcome Kazakhstan for the reverse fixture in Nuremberg next Tuesday.