Germany defender Antonio Rudiger is set to miss Euro 2016 with knee ligament damage with Bayer Leverkusen’s Johnathan Tah called up as his replacement.
Roma centre-back Rudiger ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee during Germany’s first training session in France on Tuesday and was ruled out of the tournament.
Tah, 20, made his international debut in March’s friendly defeat to England and has been summoned to join Joachim Low’s squad at their training base in Evian.
Low announced the squad change at a press conference streamed live on the German Football Association’s video feed DFB-TV.
He said of Rudiger: “It’s very unfortunate to pick up such a bad injury on the first day of training. I feel very sorry for him.
“We have decided to call up Jonathan Tah. We wanted to replace Toni Rudiger with a centre-back.”
Midfielder Mesut Ozil also showed his support for stricken team-mate Rudiger, tweeting: “You’re a fighter, bro! Get well soon! @ToniRuediger”
Tah, having flown in from a holiday in Florida, will have a chance of featuring in Germany’s opening game against Ukraine on Sunday as Mats Hummels is also struggling with a calf injury.
Jerome Boateng seems certain to start in one of the centre-back positions, with Benedikt Howedes and Shkodran Mustafi the other specialist options – although one of that pair is likely to play at right-back. Midfielders Emre Can or Joshua Kimmich could also drop back into defence.
Low addressed Hummels’ situation and that of the other injured players remaining in the squad.
“Mats Hummels’ individual training is increasing in intensity,” he said. “Julian Weigl, Joshua Kimmich and Lukas Podolski can join in again tomorrow.
“In preparation for the game against Ukraine it is important that we gain the necessary freshness.”