German fans cool on Schweinsteiger’s farewell

Friendly against Finland will mark 32-year-old's 121st appearance for country


Afp August 30, 2016
PHOTO: AFP

BERLIN: Bastian Schweinsteiger is going, but not many fans are set to come to his farewell Germany appearance when the exiled Manchester United midfielder takes his bow in Wednesday’s home friendly.

The international against Finland in Borussia Monchengladbach, which is doubling as Schweinsteiger’s farewell on his 121st appearance, is not expected to sell-out.

Less than half of the 43,000 tickets available had been sold by Monday with  Schweinsteiger set to bow out after more than 12 years in the famous white shirt.

Schweinsteiger, Podolski to play for the last time in Germany friendly

“It’s a bit of a pity for Bastian, if the stadium isn’t sold out,” admitted Germany coach Joachim Low.

Tickets cost between 25-75 euros ($28-$83), but Low admits the timing of the friendly is not great.

“It’s a bit unfortunate: there were the European championships, the Olympics and the Bundesliga has now begun,” he said.

Schweinsteiger retires from Germany duty

“On top of that, the kick-off time is quite late and the pupils are back in school, but I hope that a few more fans will come,” he added.

Schweinsteiger has said he has no plans to leave United despite new coach Jose Mourinho having banished him to the Under-23 team and insisted the soon-to-be ex-Germany captain is not in his plans.

Wednesday’s friendly is Schweinsteiger’s chance to show Mourinho what he has been missing.

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Low has said he will only name Schweinsteiger’s replacement as Germany captain after the Finland international.

Bayern Munich trio Manuel Neuer, who was skipper for five of their six Euro 2016 matches, Jerome Boateng and Thomas Muller are all vying for the armband with Neuer as the favourite.

Low said now is the right time to retire for Schweinsteiger and Lukas Podolski, who both made their debuts for Germany against Hungary in 2004.

“For both, it was a very good time. Both have shaped the national team and in winning the World Cup, they have won the top title,” said Low. “For both of them, it was the right decision to focus on their club teams and that was absolutely fine by me.”

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