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  HOME | Sports (Click here for more)

Löw: Özil, Gündogan Love Playing with Germany despite Erdogan Picture

MOSCOW – The head coach of Germany’s national soccer team, Joachim Löw, said on Wednesday at a press conference that, although they were heckled over their picture in May with Turkey’s controversial president, both Mesut Özil and Ilkay Gündogan love playing with “Die Mannschaft,” the defending World Cup champions.

Özil and Gündogan, both of Turkish origin, were photographed with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, which resulted in the players being heckled by fans during Friday’s friendly against Saudi Arabia.

Löw, at a press conference in Vatunki, on the outskirts of Moscow, assured reporters that both players are respected by their teammates and that Özil and Gündogan are happy to play for Germany.

Erdogan is considered by some observers to be a moderate Islamist leader while others say he has used Syrian refugees as pawns in Turkey’s economic and political negotiations with the European Union.

 

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