June 7, 2023

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New faces in top teams: France have another Thuram, Spain have experienced players from La Liga, Flick called up Milan defender

Alexander Shvolov before Sommer’s performance was the record holder for the number of saves per match

Alexander Shvolov before Sommer’s performance was the record holder for the number of saves per match

The period after the World Cup is the time for the renewal of the top teams. Coaches allow themselves to experiment and attract new players. And we have collected newcomers in one post – get to know each other.

Germany national team

“We need to assemble the strongest team for Euro 2024, which will be held in Germany. It is especially important to use the first games of this year – this is the time for new players to prove themselves. Every workout is important here,” Hansi Flick is serious. And he called six newcomers at once.

🇩🇪 Marius Wolf (defender, Borussia Dortmund, 27 years old)

Wolf made the most of Thomas Meunier’s injuries. This season, Marius’ good form and play on the right side of the defense is one of the success factors of Borussia Dortmund, who are in first place in the Bundesliga. For the German national team, the right-back is a problematic position, so Wolf’s progress could save Flick a headache.

🇩🇪 Yosha Vagnoman (defender, Stuttgart, 22 years old)

By the age of 22, Wagnoman has the status of the youngest debutant of Hamburg in the Bundesliga and a victory in the youth Euro U21. True, Yoshi’s call to the national team came as a surprise even at the club – the 190-centimeter right-back is not the main one in Stuttgart either.

🇩🇪 Malik Tiav (defender, AC Milan, 21 years old)

The resurgence of Milan Pioli coincided with the connection to the basis of the young centre-back. In the summer, he came from Schalke, got used to it in six months and gradually became the most important player in the three defenders of the Italian champion. He was invited to the national team only after Bell-Kotchap from Southampton was injured, but the call is fully deserved.

🇩🇪 Felix Nmecha (midfielder, Wolfsburg, 22)

Felix – like his older brother Lucas – is a graduate of the Manchester City system and even played for the English youth team. Now both Nmechs have united in Wolfsburg. The Bundesliga website compares Felix to Zinedine Zidane – the young midfielder is good with the ball and has physical strength. Let’s follow.

🇩🇪 Kevin Schade (forward, Brentford, 21)

In the winter, the Freiburg winger was loaned to Brentford, and they will probably buy him out for 25 million euros in the summer. Sade is not yet the main player in the English club, but this did not stop Hansi Flick – now the coach’s task is to see as many youngsters as possible.

🇩🇪 Mergim Berisha (forward, Augsburg, 24 years old)

The German national team has an acute shortage of center forwards, so the guy who scored 2 goals for Bayern in March received a call. Back in the summer, Fenerbahce did not need him, and in 2020 he scored a double in Moscow against Lokomotiv – Mergim then played for Red Bull Salzburg.

France national team

Didier Deschamps is in place, many of the 2022 World Cup squad too. But several important players have retired from the national team, so there are new faces too.

🇫🇷 Brice Samba (goalkeeper, Lens, 28)

Hugo Lloris and Steve Mandanda have retired from the national team, France are waiting for a renewal of the goalkeeping team. Mike Meignan will certainly take the place at the base, and the experienced and charismatic Brice Samba can become his replacement. Last season, he pulled Nottingham into the Premier League, and this time he plays for Lens – with a margin of the best defense of the French championship. 

Jean-Clair Todibo (Defender, Nice, 23)

Due to injuries, Wesley Fofana (also the first challenge for him) and William Saliba did not reach the national team. So it was Tobido’s turn, who found himself at Nice after failing at Barça, Schalke and Benfica. A bright highlight of the season for Jean-Clair is a 9-second penalty in September.

🇫🇷 Kefren Thuram (midfielder, Nice, 21 years old)

“I am even more proud of him than of myself,” Marcus Thuram admitted after the announcement of the application of the French national team. Yes, now there are two sons of Lilian Thuram in the team. Kefren is a Nice midfielder, distinguished by both his size (192 cm) and his defensive play. But Thuram Jr. connects well to attacks: this season he has 2 goals and 8 assists. 

Belgium national team

Domenico Tedesco starts interesting – in the new convocation, only Vertonghen is older than 31. But there is 19-year-old Zeno Debast, Orel Mangala from Nottingham and Dodi Lukebakio from Hertha. They have all been called up to the Belgian national team.

🇧🇪 Romeo Lavia (midfielder, Southampton, 19)

The big renewal of the Belgian national team has begun. There are enough young players in the squad, but not so many new names. One of them is Romeo Lavia. Perhaps the main star of Southampton this season, a graduate of Manchester City and one of the most promising defensive midfielders in the Premier League. There is a version that next season will be more serious in the club.