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Germany dealt major injury blow ahead of Scotland Euro 2024 opener



JULIAN NAGELSMANN’S sweating over the availability of Germany’s powerhouse frontman Niclas Fullkrug.

The Alan Shearer-style striker – seen by many as a good old fashioned number nine – is carefully managing a knee problem.


The Dortmund striker is struggling with a fresh injuryCredit: Reuters
It could change Julian Nagelsmann's plans for the opening clash


It could change Julian Nagelsmann’s plans for the opening clashCredit: Getty

It’s preventing the Borussia Dortmund ace from playing 90 minutes.

The 31-year-old – a Champions League runners-up – came off the bench for the last 20 minutes in Germany’s 2-1 win over Greece in Monchengladbach on Friday night, their last warm-up game before the massive Euros opener against Scotland.

Fullkrug played 53 games last season for club and country and because of his fitness worry is expected to be deployed by Nagelsmann as an impact sub – with Arsenal Kai Harvetz told he’s their first choice up top.

The former Werder Bremen, Hannover and Nuremberg star has had a fine season, netting 20 goals, but been off the boil lately, managing just one in his last six games – against PSG in the Champions League semi-final.

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Nagelsmann gave his players the weekend off to be with their families but they’re back in training today as expectation levels grow dramatically the closer they get to facing Steve Clarke’s men in Munich on Friday night.

Veteran goalkeeper Manuel Neuer will survive mounting pressure to be dropped following a howler against the Greeks, with the German head coach steadfast with his support.

Nagelsman, however, has given Nuremberg keeper Jan Reichert a chance to work with the squad in training.

The 22-year-old prospect isn’t part of the official 26-man Euros squad, with Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Hoffenheim’s Oliver Baumann the back-up options to Neuer.

But Nagelsmann’s happier with four keepers working out in training.

Nuremberg is also close to Germany’s Euros base at Herzogenaurach.

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UEFA, meanwhile, has a problem with city of Munich authorities – over pyrotechnics.

Europe’s governing football body plans to ignite a spectacular fireworks show on Friday night as a highlight of the opening ceremony.

But local officials aren’t happy with the extent of what’s intended and both sides are currently in negotiations.

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