At the home European Championships 2024: Kroos with a comeback in the national team

As of: February 22, 2024 2:49 p.m

Toni Kroos will play for the German national football team again around three years after his retirement.

Following a request from national coach Julian Nagelsmann, he will “play for Germany again from March,” the 34-year-old Real Madrid midfielder announced on Instagram on Thursday (February 22, 2024).

Back at the tests in March

He had expressly kept the option of a comeback open in recent months; national coach Julian Nagelsmann called it “an interesting idea”.

He will be back at the March internationals against France in Lyon (March 23) and against the Netherlands in Frankfurt/Main (March 26).

Last game at the European Championships against England

After 106 international matches, Kroos retired from the DFB in 2021 after the round of 16 defeat against England at the European Championships. Now he wants to play for the national team again – and then also at the European Championship in his own country, which begins for the DFB team on June 14th in Munich against Scotland.

Ancelotti: “Toni is irreplaceable, even when he doesn’t play”

Even in the autumn of his career, the native of Greifswald is one of the pillars of the team at Real Madrid. “Toni is irreplaceable, even when he doesn’t play,” coach Carlo Ancelotti recently enthused about the Mecklenburger. DFB sports director Rudi Völler also recently said that Kroos is “still a world-class player” who still shows that he is “capable of great things, of powerful things.”

Midfield strategist Kroos doesn’t actually have to prove anything to anyone anymore. He is the only German player to have won the Champions League five times, four times with Real and once with FC Bayern Munich. The 2014 world champion is considered an icon for the Royals. But opinions have recently differed on the debate about the need for Kroos to return.

Skepticism in Hoeneß and Matthäus

“That would be quite a Titanic signal,” said Bayern patron Uli Hoeneß. Record national player Lothar Matthäus was also very skeptical. “Where should he play? If you bring Kroos back, you automatically weaken Ilkay Gündogan, even as captain,” warned the 1990 World Cup captain. Some national players, however, spoke out in favor of a comeback by Kroos.

“I’m always happy to play with Toni. If he has the desire and time, I’m happy to,” said Bayern professional Joshua Kimmich. Real colleague Antonio Rüdiger was probably the strongest supporter of Kroos’ nomination. “And if I can speak so openly and honestly: I think many people think the same as me,” said the 30-year-old to “Kicker” before the guest appearance in Leipzig.