Legendary midfielder Steffen Effenberg suggested that German stars Mesut Ozil and Ilkay Gundogan should have been axed from the country’s squad for 2018 World Cup in Russia after their controversial meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last month.
Erdogan has been linked with human rights violation allegations and jailing of journalists. The former Bayern star claims that the two stars went against the values of DFB after a picture of them with the Turkish president surfaced online.
‘When you put everything on your values like those the DFB always transmit, the only decision is to get rid of the two players.’ Steffen said.
The Nationalelf boss Joachim Loew also warned the duo to expect tough times with the fans on Sunday when they play Mexico in their first group stage match.
‘My job now is to bring both players to top form so that they are well prepared,’ Loew said.
‘They will probably be accompanied by some whistles from supporters on Sunday.’ He added.
Gundogan, however, already got the taste of a section of Germany fans’ wrath during their last week’s friendly match against Saudi Arabia. Ozil did not feature in the match.
Loew also admitted that Gundogan was affected by the whistles.
‘OK, it is what it is. I cannot influence the whistles. I would have liked it differently but my job is to get them into the flow and help our team,’ Loew said.
‘He was a bit dejected after the game and we had to build him up a bit. This three-day break before arriving in Russia was good for him.
‘Maybe both can now turn the switch and focus on what is important for us. We will succeed in having them in the form we want them in.’ He added