Bastian Schweinsteiger will lead Germany onto the field for their Euro 2016 semi-final against France on Thursday night after being passed fit to play.
The Manchester United midfielder was a doubt due to a niggling injury he aggravated in the penalty shoot-out win over Italy in the quarter-finals, but Germany coach Joachim Low confirmed that he is fit and will start.
“I have the team in my head and Bastian Schweinsteiger will definitely start.
“I always said that if he trains 100 per cent without complaints then he will play. The injury is cured and he showed against Italy he’s got the strength to play from the start,”
“And I believe he’s very, very important, particularly in such a game - his experience is very valuable.
“We have three players - Mario Gomez, Sami Khedira and Mats Hummels - who we have to replace, which is not easy, and this is why it is important that an experienced player like Bastian starts.
“If he’s not strong enough to last the whole game, then we’ve got alternatives to come on later.”
Low is therefore glad to be able to count on Schweinsteiger’s years of international experience for what he expects to be his side’s toughest game of Euro 2016, and also France’s most difficult challenge.
“We’re not playing against a team, we’re playing against an entire country, so I wouldn’t say we’re favourites,” Low said.