GERMAN confidence ahead of their Euro 2016 battles with Poland and Ireland over the next week has taken a hammering after Arsenal star Meust Ozil joined the list of absentees from Joachim Loew's squad.
With key men Bastian Schweinsteiger, Sami Khedira and Marco Reus already ruled out due to injury, Loew was keen to avoid any further squad problems ahead of Saturday's test in Warsaw and then Tuesday's home tie with Ireland.
But yesterday the German FA confirmed that Ozil was out due to a knee injury which had been detected after he reported to Frankfurt for international duty. The Germans stated that Ozil would be absent for 10-12 weeks, though his club later issued their own statement, Arsenal stressing that they were awaiting their own medical report on their €50million signing before making a prognocis on his abense.
"Arsenal can confirm that midfielder Mesut Ozil is returning to London from international duty with Germany after picking up a knee injury during Sunday's game at Chelsea," the Gunners said.
"Ozil complained of a sore left knee after the game and the club advised the German FA to run medical checks when he joined up with his international squad.
"The club will make further assessments and it is too early to say how long Ozil may be out of action."
There was one piece of good news fro LOew, however, as Schalke man Julian Draxler reported for duty. It has been feared that the 21-year-old would miss out on a chance to plan for Germany on home turf next week - he plays his club football at the Veltins Arena in Schalke, the venue for Tuesday's meeting with Ireland - after he delayed joining the squad due to a mystery illness.
But he has since revealed that he was merely suffering with the flu and after a two-day rest is in camp with the Germans and eager to take on Poland and Ireland.