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Twelve FCB stars in international action

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Twelve FCB stars in international action

Postby FCBayernNews » Mon Nov 12, 2007 11:26 pm

12.11.2007

After recording just one win in their last five matches, Bayern will be more grateful than normal for the two-week break in the Bundesliga programme occasioned by the latest round of international fixtures, featuring the final qualifiers for Euro 2008 in Switzerland and Austria, and eliminators for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The downside is that half the senior squad will be away from Munich on international duty.

As usual, the largest single-country contingent will report to coach Joachim Löw of Germany. <b>Philipp Lahm, Marcell Jansen, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Miroslav Klose</b> and <b>Lukas Podolski</b> have been called up for the conclusion of Germany’s Euro qualifying campaign against Cyprus in Hanover on 17 November and the meeting with Wales in Frankfurt am Main four days later. Löw’s men are level with the Czech Republic at the top of Group D on 23 points, but occupy second spot after losing out in the direct comparison between the sides.

<b>Drama in Group B</b>

Meanwhile, junior pro <b>Mats Hummels</b> has been called up by coach Dieter Eilts to the Germany U-21s for a European championship qualifier against Iceland in Trier on 16 November, before contesting a friendly in Luxemburg four days later.

At senior level, Euro qualifying Group B promises the most dramatic run-in of all, as just two points cover World Cup runners-up France (25) and <b>Franck Ribéry</b>, Scotland (24) and Italy (23) with <b>Luca Toni</b>, although the reigning world champions have a game in hand on their rivals.

<b>All-or-nothing for Altintop</b>

The French meet Morocco in a friendly on Saturday in Paris, but Hampden Park in Glasgow hosts a do-or-die showdown between the Scots and the <i>Azzurri</i>. Four days later, the Italians meet the Faeroes in Modena, with France facing a tough end to their qualifying campaign against Ukraine in Kiev.

<b>Hamit Altintop</b> and Turkey also face an all-or-nothing scenario in Group C. The Turks on 18 points must beat second-placed Norway (20) in Oslo and then defeat Bosnia and Herzegovina (13) to snatch a place at next summer’s tournament, as Norway round off their campaign in midweek away to minnows Malta. Continental champions Greece have already booked the first qualifying berth in the group.

<b>South American eyes on South Africa</b>

The final two qualifiers for <b>Daniel van Buyten</b> and Belgium are merely being played for the record: the Euro 2000 co-hosts, out of the running on 15 points, visit runaway leaders Poland (24) before a final outing away to bottom team Azerbaijan (5).

Finally, South American duo <b>Lucio</b> and <b>Martin Demichelis</b> resume the battle for qualifying points ahead of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The Brazilian captains the <i>Selecao</i> against Peru on 18 November and Uruguay on 21 November. Micho and the <i>Albiceleste</i> play a day earlier respectively at home to Bolivia and away to Colombia. Two games into the marathon South American qualifying tournament, Argentina lead the standings on six points from five-time World Cup winners Brazil and Paraguay on four points each.
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