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Julian Nagelsmann is the national coach of the men's national football team until the end of July 2024

Photo: IMAGO/Joaquim Ferreira / IMAGO/HMB-Media

İlkay Gündoğan will remain captain of the national football team under new national coach Julian Nagelsmann. "We'll leave it at that. I appreciate İlkay as a person and as a footballer," said Nagelsmann at his presentation.

Gündoğan was appointed team captain by Nagelsmann's predecessor Hansi Flick at the beginning of September 2023. Together with Bayern player Joshua Kimmich, who had recently led the DFB selection, midfielder Gündoğan from FC Barcelona should form the new management duo.

Kimmich has been a close Nagelsmann confidant since their time together at FC Bayern Munich. Therefore, there had been speculation about Kimmich's return to the captaincy after it was clear that Nagelsmann would take over the DFB team.

Nagelsmann: Neuer must be 100 per cent efficient

Nagelsmann, on the other hand, left the future of goalkeeper Manuel Neuer in the national team open. "He has a very serious injury. The most important thing is that we give Manu enough time to get well and get back to 100 percent performance. If the situation arises, we will evaluate it," he said of Neuer, who broke his lower leg in December 2022 and has not played a game since.

Since then, FC Barcelona's Marc-André ter Stegen has also been guarding the German goal. "We are very fortunate to have access to several world-class goalkeepers," Nagelsmann continued. Neuer and Nagelsmann also know each other very well from their time together in Munich. There, however, the relationship between the two was considered strained.

Previously, the German Football Association (DFB) had confirmed the signing of Nagelsmann as Flick's successor. The 36-year-old has been given a contract until 31 July 2024 and thus until after the home European Championship, which will take place in Germany from 14 June to 14 July. Sandro Wagner and Benjamin Glück will be assistant coaches.

Nagelsmann is expected to lead the national team back to the top of the world after the three weak tournaments of the 2018 World Cup, the 2021 European Championship and the 2022 World Cup. The German national team will play their first games under their new coach against the USA (14 October) and Mexico (18 October). At the end of the year, the duel against Austria follows on 21 November.