Germany have suffered a major blow just days ahead of the FIFA World Cup with the news that midfielder Marco Reus will miss the tournament due to an ankle injury.
The Borussia Dortmund player suffered the problem during his side's 6-1 defeat of Armenia on Friday, their final test ahead of Brazil 2014. Scans subsequently revealed ligament damage in Reus's left ankle, consigning him to the sidelines for six to seven weeks and prompting Germany coach Joachim Löw to call up Shkodran Mustafi as a replacement.
"For him and for us, this is very upsetting," said Löw. "Marco was in great shape and left a superb impression in our last two matches as well as in training sessions. He played a central role in our plans for the tournament in Brazil."
Löw nonetheless opted not to select another attacking midfielder to take Reus's place in the squad, drafting UC Sampdoria defender Mustafi instead. Mustafi, 22, had originally been included in Germany's provisional squad but was one of three players who missed the final cut on the 2 June deadline.
"For us, it wasn't necessary to replace Reus directly," added Löw. "We have a lot of quality and plenty of alternatives in the positions behind the striker. That's why we picked another option in defence. Shkodran impressed us during our training camp. We know that we can rely on him 100%."
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