International: Germany coach Joachim Low calls up Sidney Sam and Max Kruse
Sidney Sam and Max Kruse have been rewarded with Germany call-ups after their strong starts to the Bundesliga season.
Last Updated: 30/08/13 11:50am
Both were named on Friday in the squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Austria and the Faroe Islands.
Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Sam and Borussia Monchengladbach striker Kruse were involved in Germany's post-season tour of the USA, when Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund players were absent, and they have now been included in a 24-man selection for two potentially crucial encounters.
Both benefit from an injury to Arsenal's Lukas Podolski which forces coach Joachim Low into a tactical reassessment.
Should Germany beat Austria and the Faroe Islands, and other results go their way, Low's men could confirm their place at Brazil 2014.
"We're totally focused on these games against Austria and the Faroes," said Low.
"We may have an advantage at the top of our World Cup qualifying group, but we have not qualified for Brazil yet.
"Our clear aim is to take a further step towards doing that in these two games."
Low has also recalled Bastian Schweinsteiger, who missed the friendly against Paraguay earlier this month due to injury, while captain Philipp Lahm could pick up his 100th cap against Austria in Munich's Allianz Arena next Friday.
That game is likely to be the most difficult of the two and, after conceding three to Paraguay recently, Low knows his side have got to tighten up.
"We know that our neighbours are always very motivated when they play Germany," said Low.
"They have a good pressing and a quick counter-attacking play and you can clearly see the signature of my colleague Marcel Koller, whom I respect a lot.
"Austria are going to give it everything to keep their chances of qualifying alive so we're going to have to be fully focused from the start."
Germany currently top qualifying Group C by five points from Austria, Sweden and the Republic of Ireland with four games remaining and they will finish their qualifying campaign against Ireland on October 11 and in Sweden four days later.
Squad: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Rene Adler (Hamburg), Ron-Robert Zieler (Hannover); Jerome Boateng, Philipp Lahm (both Bayern Munich), Benedikt Howedes (Schalke), Mats Hummels, Marcel Schmelzer (both Borussia Dortmund), Per Mertesacker (Arsenal); Sven Bender, Marco Reus (both Borussia Dortmund), Mario Gotze, Toni Kroos, Thomas Muller, Bastian Schweinsteiger (all Bayern Munich), Lars Bender, Sidney Sam (both Bayer Leverkusen), Mesut Ozil, Sami Khedira (both Real Madrid), Andre Schurrle (Chelsea), Julian Draxler (Schalke); Mario Gomez (Fiorentina), Miroslav Klose (Lazio), Max Kruse (Borussia Monchengladbach).