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Toni Kroos talks Bellingham, Wirtz, Musiala, Rudiger, Euros

Toni Kroos talks Bellingham, Wirtz, Musiala, Rudiger, Euros
Toni Kroos talks Bellingham, Wirtz, Musiala, Rudiger, Euros

Following his retirement from club football after Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League triumph, Toni Kroos is preparing for his last hurrah with the German national team at the UEFA Euro 2024.

The tournament, set to kick off this week in Germany, will be the last time Kroos will play professional football as he will retire completely once the competition is done and dusted.

Building up to their opening fixture of the tournament against Scotland on Friday, Kroos appeared at a press conference earlier today, during which he discussed various things, including his objectives for the Euros.

On the Euros

“Playing a Euro at home is even more special. I don’t think there are many players who have experienced a major tournament at home. The country is excited and we have a big responsibility for the atmosphere in the coming weeks,” he said.

“It is a great honour and a joy to be able to play in this tournament. Of course, there is pressure, but to a certain extent, you have to enjoy that pressure. It’s just football.”

Kroos then discussed the Scotland game, claiming that he had spoken about the opponents with some of his ex-Real Madrid teammates who had lost to them while playing for Spain.

“We have to play the first game in a positive way. We know what kind of opponent we’re up against, Scotland can be very uncomfortable. I’ve spoken to my Madrid teammates, who lost to them with Spain, so we’ve been warned. It will be a very difficult game.”

Having come out of international tournament back in March keeping the Euros in mind, Kroos insisted that he is eager to win the trophy, saying:

“Of course, I’m hungry to win, otherwise I wouldn’t have made the decision to come back. I want to win this tournament, otherwise I wouldn’t be here.”

On the next generation

Kroos full of praise for Bellingham. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)
Kroos full of praise for Bellingham. (Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)

With Kroos retiring, Jude Bellingham is now expected to take his position in midfield next season, moving to a deeper role than what he played in his debut campaign.

Talking about the Englishman, Kroos said: “I was able to play with him for a year and I often had to ask myself if he was only 20 years old. Of course, he looks more mature, especially off the pitch. He has character.”

The German international was then asked if his national teammates, Jamal Musiala and Florian Wirtz – the latter a target for Real Madrid, are similar to Bellingham, to which he replied:

“They are different players. They are difficult for the opponent to tackle and they don’t have the same physical strength as Jude.”

On whether Wirtz and Musiala have the required level to play for Real Madrid, the veteran legend added:

“I don’t think there are many limits for either of them. They have to stay healthy, keep the will to win and be consistent to stay on top.

“Both of them will have problems from time to time. But their attitude means they have a good foundation to be able to play anywhere.”

Kroos also touched upon the ‘heated altercation’ that took place between Antonio Rudiger and Niclas Fullkrug in Germany’s training sessions yesterday, saying:

“I see it as a good thing when situations like this happen. Although it wasn’t meant to be taken too seriously. The only person Niclas was angry with was the referee. He knows he only has himself to blame if he gets into a duel with Toni [laughs].”

Source: BILD