Germany coach since Jul 2006
Was Jurgen Klinsmann’s right-hand with the national team for two years, earning praise for his tactical set-ups and work on the training ground. But while “Yogi” is one of the game’s nice guys, the velvet glove can contain an iron fist.
Known for taking penalty kicks (he has netted nearly 30 goals in Germany’s top flight. Took the place of former Leverkusen team-mate Adler, who had to withdraw due to a rib injury.
A key member of the Under 21 side which triumphed at the 2009 European championships, his main assets are his sharp reflexes and superior distribution by hand or foot. He can suffer lapses in concentration. He was first called up to the senior national team for
a tour of Asia at the end of last season. With hometown club Schalke since the age of five.
Loud, larger than life character, you either love or hate. On his line, he is a world-class shot-stopper and has a knack for saving penalties. Conversely, he is not so strong dealing with crosses and can be over-impulsive, especially when racing off his line. As a youngster he excelled up front, catching the eye of Leverkusen scouts.
1 cap (0 goals)
Footballer of Nigerian descent, who turned down several invitations by the Nigerian Football Association in favour of representing Germany.
1 cap (0 goals)
Badstuber is another product of the Bayern Munich youth academy. A centre back by training, he has been playing out of position for Bayern at left back.
3 caps (0 goals)
Lanky central defender or right-back handed his first cap in the vital World Cup qualifying win in Russia last autumn. His red card that night underlined his impetuosity, but coach Low stood by him, placing the emphasis on his fields of excellence: the speed off the mark, imposing physique and naked determination. Born in Berlin to a German mother and Ghanaian father, he is the brother of Portsmouth midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng.
69 caps (0 goals)
This resourceful central defender or right-back has never been a favourite of German pundits. But he has never let the criticism get to him and after eight years is still in the national team saddle. A solid and composed man-marker, though not the most refined on the ball. He had appeared in just two Bundesliga games when handed his first cap in August 2002.
30 caps (2 goals)
Versatile performer who has appeared at club level on the left of midfield and left wingback.
64 caps (3 goals)
Dynamic, rubber ball of a full-backs happy on either flank. Often plays as an ersatz winger and is especially dangerous when cutting inside. While his defensive game has improved steadily over the years, his small frame does put him at a certain disadvantage. He has a foundation to aid underprivileged children in Germany and Africa.
60 caps (1 goal)
Beanpole central defender whose stock-in-trade is his aerial power, serenity under pressure and finely-tuned anticipation. No centre-back commit less fouls, but a lack of pace remains his Achilles heel. During his time at Hannover he was a good friend of the late Germany keeper Robert Enke and carried the wreath at the latter’s funeral.
10 caps (0 goals)
This German-born centre-back of Turkish heritage is tenacity personified, has above-average powers of recovery and boasts a sheen of technical quality. However, his positioning is not always the best and he can be turned. A product of the Stuttgart youth system, he made his international debut in August 2008 against Belgium.
2 caps (0 goals)
Dynamic young central midfielder who injured a knee this spring and won a race against time to be fit for the finals. Seen as a replacement for the injured Michael Ballack. His father is from Tunisia and his mother is from Germany. Younger brother Rani plays for the youth ranks of VfB Stuttgart and is a member of the Germany U15 team.
1 cap (0 goals)
On loan at Leverkusen from Bayern Munich this term, the left-sided or central plyamaker has been a revelation. A youngster of rare maturity, he offers precision passing, free-kick expertise and a rocket-shot. Surprisingly for a creator, he can make rather conservative choices on the pitch. Would rather take his dog out for a walk than go to a night club.
7 caps (1 goals)
Old school wing wizard who could prove a more than useful tournament impact player. Sold for €8.5 million from Borussia Mönchengladbach to Werder Bremen in June 2009 and after a successful season, earned a call-up to Low’s final 23.
8 caps (1 goal)
Another German-born son of Turkish ‘gastarbeiter’, the young number ten has brought much-needed finesse and improvisation to the midfield since establishing himself in the side this season. His magical left- foot can open any door; a certain inconsistency has it slammed in his face. Mesut means happy in Turkish.
73 caps (19 goals)
The accomplished right-sided or central midfielder has left his wild child days long behind him. Top marks for versatility, energy, good support play and care in possession. Less impressive is a tendency to slow approach play to a crawl. About to participate in his fourth major international tournament. His older brother Tobias plays for Unterhaching, Munich’s third club.
24 caps (2 goals)
Diminutive left-sided playmaker of considerable technical prowess, trickery and vision. However, 100 per cent effective he is not and to a certain degree the opposition penalty area is a no-go zone for him. A former leading light of the Bayern Munich youth team, he was born in Poland and once made it known that he wanted to represent them internationally. Unfortunately, the Polish federation ignored the appeal.
5 caps (0 goals)
Brazil-born striker picked to play for the Nationalmannschaft shortly after acquiring German citizenship in the spring of 2009. His key assets are his pace, clever movement – particularly when running from deep positions – inventiveness and his right-footed finishing. Only average in the air. He owes his nom de plume to his inability as a child to pronounce his christian name Claudemir.
32 caps (11 goals)
Powerfully-built front-man and footballing paradox: a prolific marksman at club level, but still to prove he has what it takes with the Nationalmannschaft. He has all the physical and technical qualities, but mental strength is another matter. The son of a Spanish father and German mother, he became the most expensive player in Bundesliga history last year when Bayern paid Stuttgart £32 million for him.
3 caps (0 goals)
In red-hot goalscoring form for his club this season, the Kilnsmannesque striker has developed into a complete frontrunner, comfortable in both the guise of penalty box poacher and willing runner in the channels. Strong in the air, two-footed and hard-working, he sometimes does too much tracking back. Infamous for once leaving his boots at the hotel before an Under 21 game.
94 caps (48 goals)
A lack of first team football this season has not affected the striker’s long-held untouchable status with the national team. Invaluable for his industry, mobility, ability to link the play and especially his dead-eye goalscoring, especially with his head. A touch more nastiness and self-interest would not go amiss. Born in Poland, his father Josef was a pro footballer, while his mother was a top handball player.
1 cap (0 goals)
In his first season as a professional the attacking-third all-rounder has proved a sensation, quick, incisive, a fine crosser of the ball and cool in front of goal. A debutant in the March friendly against Argentina, his down-to-earth attitude is a plus, but he still needs to fully develop physically. He was married recently to his long-time girlfriend Lisa.
70 caps (37 goals)
For all his problems at club level (not a regular starter during his time at Bayern Munich and out of touch since rejoining first club Koln last summer), the striker or left-sided attacking midfielder, has never lost the tag of national team talisman, always to the fore with his high-energy style and thumping left-foot. Temperamentally, an explosion waiting to happen. Poland-born.