Julian Nagelsmann has been spoilt for choice.

A scarily good XI of players left out of Germany’s Euro 2024 squad

Never write off the Germans. Sometimes cliches exist for good reason.

Germany’s form for the past couple of years has been sketchy at best, while they haven’t done a great deal of note in any international tournament since winning the World Cup a decade ago.

They haven’t made it past the group stage of either of the last two World Cups and fell at the first knockout hurdle in the last European Championships three years ago.

But they might just surprise people when they host Euro 2024 this summer. Julian Nagelsmann has picked a squad stacked full of ridiculous talent, coming off the back of excellent individual campaigns at clubs like Real Madrid, Arsenal, Bayern Munich, Barcelona and surprise Bundesliga champions Bayer Leverkusen. Here’s that squad in full –

Goalkeepers: Oliver Baumann (Hoffenheim), Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Alexander Nubel (Stuttgart), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona)

Defenders: Waldemar Anton (Stuttgart), Benjamin Heinrichs (RB Leipzig), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Robin Koch (Eintracht Frankfurt), Maximilian Mittelstadt (Stuttgart), David Raum (RB Leipzig), Antonio Rudiger (Real Madrid), Nico Schlotterbeck (Borussia Dortmund), Jonathan Tah (Bayer Leverkusen)

Midfielders: Robert Andrich (Bayer Leverkusen), Chris Fuhrich (Stuttgart), Pascal Gross (Brighton), Ilkay Gundogan (Barcelona), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid), Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich), Aleksandar Pavlovic (Bayern Munich), Leroy Sane (Bayern Munich),  Florian Wirtz (Bayer Leverkusen)

Forwards: Maximilian Beier (Hoffenheim), Niclas Fullkrug (Borussia Dortmund), Kai Havertz (Arsenal), Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich), Deniz Undav (Stuttgart)

We’re not going to argue the toss against any of that lot, but it did get us thinking about the players who can consider themselves unfortunate to have missed out.

Here’s a full XI of German players who won’t be representing their country as they host Euro 2024 this summer.

GK: Stefan Ortega

Bernd Leno was largely very solid for Fulham in 2023-24, playing every minute of their decent midtable Premier League campaign. He’s also earned nine international caps since 2016 and can consider himself unfortunate to miss out on our XI, let alone the preliminary squad.

But let’s face it; no one is getting ahead of Manuel Neuer or Marc-Andre ter Stegen. So in looking at a back-up, we can’t look beyond Stefan Ortega, who has played that role to perfection at Manchester City this season.

The 31-year-old has never represented Germany at any level, while he only made five Premier League starts for Manchester City this season.

But he never put a foot (hand?) wrong when called upon and his outstanding save against Son Heung-Min was probably the most pivotal moment of the Premier League title race.

Germany couldn’t ask for a better candidate were they to suffer a freak goalkeeper injury crisis in the coming weeks.

RB: Mitchell Weiser

You only have to look at the way Joshua Kimmich struggled against Vinicius Junior to see evidence that the Bayern and Germany stalwart wasn’t quite at his best in 2023-24, but we still won’t have any quibbles over him starting at Euro 2024.

Still, Germany could do worse for an alternative option than Weiser, who was statistically among the Bundesliga’s best right-backs this season. He notched three goals and seven assists for the midtable side, admittedly in more of a wing-back role.

He was part of the Germany Under-21 side that won the Under-21 European Championships back in 2017 and can consider himself unlucky to have never been called up at senior level.

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CB: Niklas Sule

The man-mountain centre-back has won multiple Bundesliga titles with Bayern and has represented Germany on no fewer than 49 occasions.

His stock has fallen a bit in recent times, and he’s played more of a fringe squad role for Borussia Dortmund this season.

But if you’re looking for an option to bring on and help see out a tight lead, as Dortmund did in the closing stages of their Champions League semi-final victory over PSG, Germany could do a lot worse.

We don’t expect to see Sule starting against Real Madrid but he could have a vital role to play off the bench on the biggest stage in club football.

CB: Mats Hummels

C’mon Nagelsmann, did you not see Hummels rolling back the years against PSG? Have a heart.

We said we wouldn’t question any of the players who were picked, but we refuse to believe Robin Koch offers more than the vastly experienced Dortmund defender.

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LB: Vitaly Janelt

We struggled here, we’ll be honest. We can’t in good faith argue anyone should’ve been picked ahead of Stuttgart sensation Mittelstadt.

Brentford defensive midfielder Janelt is the definition of a solid, unspectacular Premier League pro. It’s no great scandal he’s continually been overlooked by Germany. Yet you’d be confident he’d do a job as a squad player if called upon.

Amid Brentford’s defensive injury crisis, Janelt did a passable job at left-back on a handful of occasions this season. That’s good enough for us. Every international squad needs a hard-working utility man.

DM: Leon Goretzka

What’s happened to Goretzka over the past year or two is a total head-scratcher.

He was an absolute powerhouse when Bayern won the treble in 2019-20, a precursor to Rodri as Europe’s top defensive midfielder.

But amid a drop in form, Nagelsmann doesn’t seem to fancy him, while Tuchel overlooked him for Bayern’s make-or-break Champions League semi-final second leg away to Real Madrid.

“He knew beforehand [that he wasn’t in Germany’s squad]. My assistants have spoken with him. I don’t know if it helps taking a lot to him. He’s had a very decent season for us, also in various roles,” says Tuchel.

“I’m convinced Leon did everything to be included. The disappointment is obviously great.”

Goretzka is only 29 and we wouldn’t be surprised if he doesn’t find his best level once again. He produced two fine performances against Arsenal and it’s a bold call to leave him out entirely

CM: Emre Can

Jadon Sancho and Hummels aren’t the only Dortmund stars that’ll be watching Euro 2024 from their sofas this summer. The club captain will be, too.

Dortmund’s run to the Champions League final has been one of the stories of the season, with Can’s industrious and disciplined performances in the heart of midfield one of the key reasons they were able to make it past PSV, Atletico Madrid and PSG in the knockout rounds.

READ: Euro 2024: Every squad announced so far as England leave out big names & Portugal pick Ronaldo…

CM: Julian Brandt

As above, Nagelsmann is evidently unmoved by Dortmund’s Champions League run. Brandt will be joining Can, Hummels, Sancho and Marco Reus in a summer of rest and recuperation after one last big test at Wembley at the start of June.

Famously the player that Jurgen Klopp wanted Liverpool to sign over Mohamed Salah, the 28-year-old has taken his time to fully realise the potential he showed as a youngster at Bayer Leverkusen.

Still, he’s earned 47 caps for Germany and has twice been named in the Bundesliga Team of the Season, so he’s evidently not doing too badly for himself.

FWR: Serge Gnabry

The Bayern Munich forward has missed the final few weeks of the season after suffering a hamstring injury in their Champions League defeat to Real Madrid.

Were it not for that, you imagine he’d have been a shoo-in for Germany’s squad, having performed well under Nagelsmann before.

The timeframe for Gnabry’s return was not given, but Nagelsmann evidently feels it’s better not to take any risks.

ST: Timo Werner

It’s no great surprise that Werner was left out, given that his stock has fallen considerably since his big-money move to Chelsea failed to pan out as expected.

Still, he’s a Champions League winner, while in Nagelsmann’s squad, Thomas Muller is the only player that’s scored more goals for Germany (45) than Werner (24).

On top of that, the 28-year-old had just started to show some signs of getting back to form during his half-season loan stint at Tottenham.

FWL: Karim Adeyemi

The fifth Dortmund player in this XI, we can only assume that Nagelsmann was otherwise engaged on Tuesday and Wednesday nights in recent months.

Adeyemi’s surging runs at the PSG defence were exhilarating, and that blistering pace alone would surely be a major asset if Germany were adopt a similarly counter-attacking approach at any point at Euro 2024.

The 22-year-old was part of Germany’s squad at the last World Cup, but he didn’t play a minute in Qatar.

Hopeful reports from Nigeria, who Adeyemi is also eligible to represent, had suggested that this snub might tempt him to switch allegiances, but FIFA rules dictate that he’s already made too many appearances to go on and represent the Super Eagles now.

Leon Goretzka among the best players to have missed out on Germany's Euro 2024 squad