Germany coach Joachim Low should leave Thomas Muller out of his squad for the Confederations Cup this year, according to former captain Lothar Matthaus.
Muller has endured a difficult season with Bayern Munich, scoring just four goals in 24 appearances while being used in a variety of different roles in Carlo Ancelotti’s system.
The 27-year-old showed signs of a slump in standards last year, as he scored only six times in the Bundesliga after the mid-season break before failing to net at all during Germany’s Euro 2016 campaign.
And Matthaus, who led West Germany to World Cup glory in 1990, believes head coach Low should rest Muller for the Confederations Cup in Russia in June – especially given they must defend their world title next year.
“He should definitely not take him to the Confederations Cup,” Matthaus, a seven-time Bundesliga champion in a glittering Bayern career, told Bild.
“I expect Jogi Low to leave Thomas and other players under a heavy workload out of his team so they have a long summer break one year ahead of the World Cup.”
Team-mate Robert Lewandowski insisted last week that Muller will recapture his form in the coming weeks, as Bayern continue their charge for a treble of Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League trophies.
Matthaus expects Muller to spend more time among the substitutes given the competition for places at Allianz Arena but feels Ancelotti will be key to helping Muller get back to his best.
“There will be times when he will be on the bench for one or two matches at Bayern again,” he said. “But that is normal at this club.
“Still, in general, he needs to feel the support. And Carlo Ancelotti does that. He will be in good shape again.”