In recent years, BVB is said to have tried to become “Borussia Deutschland” through targeted transfers of current or expected DFB national team players and thus improve their position. However, almost seven months before the start of the European Championship at home, Dortmund’s national team project was not well received by the national coach.
Julian Nagelsmann named five BVB stars for the upcoming tests against Turkey and Austria, of which only four traveled to the DFB delegation following Felix Nmecha’s withdrawal due to injury: Mats Hummels, Niklas Süle, Julian Brandt and Niclas Füllkrug.
In addition to Nmecha, six other German Borussia professionals with international experience were absent from the DFB squad – partly due to injuries, but also partly for fitness reasons.
A closer look at the eleven candidates reveals that the black and yellow plan for the national team has barely worked so far.
Mats Hummels (34, defense, 77 international appearances): The veteran with an on-and-off relationship with the DFB has the trust of Julian Nagelsmann, and a place at the European Championships on home soil is within his reach. If he continues his form, Hummels’ chances in the starting eleven aren’t bad either.
Nico Schlotterbeck (23, defense, eleven international appearances): Very unstable. The lack of concentration at the club cost the left-footer, who has so far failed to impress even in a DFB uniform, his nomination for the second time in a row. Schlotterbeck will probably be able to book a vacation for the European Championship summer soon.
Niklas Süle (28, defense, 49 international appearances): Nagelsmann knows the mercurial defensive colossus well from their time together at Hoffenheim and Munich. At BVB, however, Süle has recently alternated between the starting team and the bench. If he was part of the European Championship team, he would probably be as an emergency reserve for the wing.
Marius Wolf (28, defense, five international appearances): The versatile player only debuted for the A team in March. Despite all his efforts, his tactical and technical weaknesses are evident. Edin Terzic also barely counted on the weak Wolf in recent meetings. It’s hard to imagine Nagelsmann changing course so soon after giving up the game twice.
Emre Can (29, midfield, 43 international appearances): His period as a reserve national player ended in the spring when, after a standout run at Dortmund, he was suddenly included in the DFB team’s starting eleven. After parting ways with national coach Hansi Flick, Can is missing an important defender. The fact that he is now absent from his second consecutive international game due to injury does not help his European Championship hopes. But even if he were to be nominated for the home tournament, it would probably only be as a substitute.
Felix Nmecha (23, midfield, one international match): His surprisingly expensive move to Dortmund was met with a lot of skepticism in fan circles. Despite some positives, Nmecha has not yet managed to completely convince the doubters. Nagelsmann still wanted to try him out in the DFB team, but then hip problems arose. Will it be enough for the European Championship in the end? Quite questionable.
Julian Brandt (27, midfield, 45 international appearances): One of the few relatively consistent players at BVB, he has already scored six goals and five assists in 16 appearances this season. Brandt will almost certainly be part of the German squad at the European Championships in his own country, but a regular place is not in sight.
Marco Reus (34, midfield/attack, 48 international matches): The BVB veteran recently emphasized in an interview that he had not yet finished the selection process. However, his last mission was two years ago. Reus’ performance in recent weeks has been solid – nothing more, nothing less. Nagelsmann will likely rely on younger players at the European Championships.
Karim Adeyemi (21, attack, four internationals): Borussia’s big problem. Adeyemi has completely lost his brilliant form from the last second half of the season and is now just a noble wildcard under Terzic. His results in 2023/2024: 13 matches, zero goals, two assists. The fact that, according to a report, he has no desire to travel to the German Under-21s fits into the increasingly sloppy picture. Nagelsmann is said to have been upset by this and his European Championship chances are rapidly dwindling.
Niclas Füllkrug (30, attack, eleven international matches): Due to lack of competition, the BVB debutant is in the national team and his quota has been good so far. However, the nine-year-old still has to face adaptation problems with his new employer. However, Füllkrug has the best prospects for a regular place at the European Championships of all German professionals in Dortmund.
Youssoufa Moukoko (18, attack, two internationals): The enthusiasm surrounding the teenager has died down a bit; Moukoko is now back in the German under-21 squad after his surprise appearance at the World Cup in Qatar. At BVB, the striker is only second or third choice, and the next step of development has been a long time coming. It will probably be a while before the next test in the main selection.
In total, only three black and yellow candidates from the DFB (Hummels, Brandt, Füllkrug) have a ticket to the European Championship in sight, the rest are trembling or have almost no chance. As of now, BVB’s plan for a “Borussia Germany” doesn’t appear to be working.