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Sports

Löw calls up Tah for England and Italy games

German national team coach Joachim Löw has named his squad for the upcoming friendlies against England and Italy. Among those picked is 20-year-old defender Jonathan Tah.

The Bayern Leverkusen man, selected in the national squad for the first time, is among the 27 players that coach Löw has named for the home friendlies with England in Berlin on March 26 and Italy in Munich on March 29. The squad was announced in a in a statement released by the German FA, the DFB, on Friday.

"Due to the injuries to Jerome Boateng and Benedikt Höwedes, we were looking for a further option for the defense," Löw said. "We have scouted Jonathan Tah several times and we are looking forward to seeing how he does with us."

Also notable is the fact that in Manuel Neuer, Bernd Leno, Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Kevin Trapp, Löw has named four goalkeepers to the squad.

Among the others on the roster are midfielders Bastian Schweinsteiger and Mario Götze, who recently returned from injury, as well as veteran striker Mario Gomez.

The two friendlies in March are to be followed by one in May and another in June, as the national team gears up for this summer's European Championship in France, which kicks off on June 10.

Here is the full 27-man squad:

Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Bernd Leno (Bayer Leverkusen), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona), Kevin Trapp (Paris St. Germain)

Defenders: Emre Can (Liverpool), Matthias Ginter (Borussia Dortmund), Jonas Hector (FC Cologne), Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund), Shkodran Mustafi (FC Valencia), Antonio Rüdiger (Roma), Sebastian Rudy (1899 Hoffenheim), Jonathan Tah (Bayer Leverkusen)

Midfielders: Karim Bellarabi (Bayer Leverkusen), Julian Draxler (Wolfsburg), Sami Khedira (Juventus), Christoph Kramer (Bayer Leverkusen), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Thomas Müller (Bayern Munich), Mesut Özil (Arsenal), Lukas Podolski (Galatasaray), Marco Reus (Borussia Dortmund), Andre Schürrle (VfL Wolfsburg), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Manchester United)

Strikers: Mario Gomez (Besiktas), Mario Götze (Bayern München), Max Kruse (Wolfsburg), )Kevin Volland (1899 Hoffenheim)

pfd/ (SID, dpa)