Germany to test young players against Australia

Germany coach Joachim Loew will give some untested young players a chance to prove themselves in the friendly against Australia.

Tuesday’s match in Moenchengladbach comes three days after Germany’s comfortable 4-0 win over Kazakhstan, the fifth victory in five qualifying games for next year’s European Championship in Poland and Ukraine.

Loew’s staff is already thinking about the team’s base for the tournament and his assistants will travel to Poland next month to pick a hotel. So the match against Australia is more an afterthought at a time when the club season is coming to its peak.

In agreement with Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho, Loew released his two midfielders, Mesut Oezil and Sami Khedira, from Tuesday’s duty. Oezil set up two goals against Kazakhstan and Khedira had one assist.

Acting captain Philipp Lahm of Bayern Munich also has been given a break. His planned replacement at right back, Jerome Boateng of Manchester City, picked up a knee injury in training and is uncertain.

Loew is expected to play two Borussia Dortmund defenders, Mats Hummels and Marcel Schmelzer, who have had outstanding season for the Bundesliga leaders.

Another Dortmund player who could be in the starting 11 is the 18-year-old midfielder Mario Goetze, who also came on as substitute against Kazakhstan.

”When I see that the 18-year-old Goetze belongs to the German squad, I find that extraordinary. My young players are in reserve teams in England, there is no comparison,” Australia coach Holger Osieck, who is German, told Monday’s edition of Kicker magazine.

Osieck was Franz Beckenbauer’s assistant when Germany won the 1990 World Cup title.

In Osieck’s first tournament in charge as Australia coach, the Socceroos lost the Asian Cup final to Japan 1-0.

Australia will be without Tim Cahill of Everton because of a foot injury but Osieck is expected to use striker Robbie Kruse, who recently signed for second-division Fortuna Duesseldorf in Germany.

With other Socceroos regulars, including midfielder Jason Culina and striker Josh Kennedy, also missing, Osieck also will use some younger players.

Osieck has called up Netherlands-based midfielders James Holland and Adam Sarota and striker Brent McGrath. Two Germany-based players are also there, goalkeeper Mitch Langerak of Borussia Dortmund and striker Nikita Rukavytsya of second-division Hertha Berlin.

Australia will be seeking to avoid another crushing defeat after losing 4-0 to Germany in the group stage at last year’s World Cup in South Africa. Loew’s young team went on to finish third.

”We don’t want to receive another drubbing,” Osieck said.