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Nov 14, 2012

Podolski handed chance

Germany team manager Olivier Bierhoff says the wealth of young talent he has at his disposal will be key in their international friendly with the Netherlands on Wednesday.

Arsenal star Lukas Podolski will be handed a chance to reclaim his place in the Germany side on Wednesday night with eight players missing the friendly in Amsterdam.

Coach Joachim Low will have to make wholesale changes to his team to face the Netherlands with striker Miroslav Klose missing as well as most of the midfield line. Sami Khedria, Mesut Ozil, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Toni Kroos have all been ruled out.

"I've spoken to the doctors and when the doctors say it's a risk fielding the players, I believe them," Low explained in answer to questions about the validity of some of the withdrawals.

The game could be one of the last chances for Podolski, who is likely to start on the left of midfield. The 27-year-old appears to have fallen out of favour with Low, who prefers Dortmund's young star Marco Reus.

Asked if Podolski could replace Klose for the game at the Amsterdam ArenA, Low dismissed the idea, saying: "Lukas could play up front, but it's not his ideal position. He is more of a player who can impress behind central attack."

Low has not called up in-form Leverkusen hitman Stefan Kiessling, who has already scored seven league goals this season, but has not played for Germany since the 2010 World Cup. Low claimed he had noticed Kiessling's performances but in the game against the Netherlands wanted to test another type of player.

This could mean that Reus, 23, moves up front, with Low mentioning him as a possible target man several times. Reus already has five Bundesliga goals and two in the Champions League to his name this season.

A player that could make his debut against the Netherlands is Sebastian Jung, 22. The Frankfurt right-back was called up to the team by Low late on Sunday, when the player was already on his way to join up with the Under-21 squad ahead of their match against Turkey in Bochum.

"It was a great surprise, to be called up to the national team is something special," Jung told Frankfurter Rundschau. The right-back has played 64 Bundesliga matches for Frankfurt and also featured in 33 games during Frankfurt's stint in Bundesliga 2 last year.

Jung is on a contract until 2014, but reportedly has a €2.5 million release clause. He is currently in talks with Frankfurt and according to the club's general manager the negotiations are going well.

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