Germany head coach Joachim Loew on Wednesday named Thomas Mueller and Mats Hummels in the 26-man provisional German squad for the Euro 2020 finals, ending the pair’s two-year exile.
Dortmund defender Hummels, 32, and Bayern Munich forward Mueller, 31, were both axed by Loew in March 2019, but the 2014 World Cup winners have been recalled on the back of strong performances for their clubs.
“Back again,” Mueller posted on Twitter underneath a picture giving the thumbs up.
Hummels also reacted on Instagram “I am glad to be back – I’m really up for the new chapter”.
Loew said he did not regret axing Mueller and Hummels two years ago to give younger players a chance in the wake of the disastrous 2018 World Cup campaign when Germany crashed out in the group stages.
However, Loew admitted recent poor results – including a thrashing by Spain and shock home loss to North Macedonia, meant “we had to rethink everything”.
Mueller and Hummels have been recalled because “in terms of leadership, they can also give the team a lot,” Loew added.
Three names will be trimmed before the final 23-man squad for the European Championship from June 11 until July 11.
Eight Bayern Munich players have been named, including captain Manuel Neuer as well as 18-year-old Jamal Musiala, who opted for Germany over England this year.
Two high-profile names missing are injured Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Borussia Dortmund midfielder Marco Reus, who made himself unavailable on Tuesday after an injury-hit season.
Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Kevin Trapp (Eintracht Frankfurt), Bernd Leno (Arsenal/ENG)
Defenders: Antonio Ruediger (Chelsea/ENG), Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund), Matthias Ginter (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Niklas Suele (Bayern Munich), Emre Can (Borussia Dortmund), Lukas Klostermann (RB Leipzig), Robin Gosens (Atalanta/ITA), Robin Koch (Leeds United/ENG), Christian Guenter (Freiburg), Marcel Halstenberg (RB Leipzig)
Midfield/Forwards: Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City/ENG), Serge Gnabry (Bayern Munich), Kai Havertz (Chelsea/ENG), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid/ESP), Leon Goretzka (Bayern Munich), Timo Werner (Chelsea/ENG), Thomas Mueller (Bayern Munich), Leroy Sane (Bayern Munich), Jonas Hofmann (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich), Florian Neuhaus (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Kevin Volland (Monaco/FRA)