Various Royal Blues away on international duty

A total of ten S04 stars have been called up by their nations for the upcoming international fixtures, which are the first of the calendar year. Below, provides an overview of the Royal Blues who will be in action.

On Wednesday (22/03), Germany will bid farewell to world champion Lukas Podolski in their friendly against England at BVB's Signal Iduna Park, as the forward is retiring from international football after 13 years of wearing the DFB jersey. Four days later (26/03, 18:00 CET), points are up for grabs for Joachim Löw’s men, as they face Azerbaijan in a World Cup qualifier. Germany have so far taken the maximum 12 points from their four Group C qualifying game.

With Alessandro Schöpf and Guido Burgstaller, two Schalke players will represent Austria in their two encounters over the next couple of weeks. On Friday (24/03), they will contest a World Cup qualifier against Moldova in Vienna, before facing Finland in a friendly on Tuesday the 28th in Innsruck. Both games kick off at 20:45 CET). Austria are currently under pressure in their group, as they have only managed to take four points from four qualifiers. For Burgstaller, it’s his first international call-up for two years.

Sead Kolasinac will be in action with his native Bosnia and Herzegovina, who have so far racked up seven points in Group H this qualifying campaign. On Saturday (25/03), they take on the currently pointless Gibraltar in a World Cup qualifier, before coming up against Albania three days later in a friendly.

At the top of Group I, Yevhen Konoplyanka and Ukraine will battle it out with Croatia in Zagreb on Friday (24/03, 20:45 CET) – an encounter which sees two currently unbeaten teams face each other. At the same time, Kosovo play Iceland which means Donis Avdijaj could make debut for the newly-accepted FIFA nation. The 20 year old, who represented Germany at junior levels, recently expressed his desire to wear the Kosovan shirt at international level.

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting has been called up for Cameroon’s two upcoming friendly matches. The reigning champions of Africa will face Tunisia on Friday (24/03) and then Guinea on Tuesday (28/03), in Monastir and Brussels respectively.

Leon Goretzka, Max Meyer und Thilo Kehrer have been included in the Germany U21s squad for their next two friendly games, which will serve as vital preparation for the European Championships in the summer. Two hard-fought encounters await the U21s, as they host England in Wiesbaden on Friday (24/03, 20:00 CET), while their second opponents four days later are Portugal. The clash with Portugal is to kick off at 18:00 CET in Stuttgart.

Kehrer was called up at short notice to replace FC Augsburg’s Dominik Kohr who is injured, while Goretzka still hadn’t travelled to the team’s camp on Monday (20/03). The midfielder still needs to undergo some medical checks.