Monday, November 28, 2016

German-born players capped by other national teams

Boateng vs Boateng: Germany vs Ghana

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

I have created blog entries for Brazilian-born players and Argentine-born players who were capped by other countries.  This is my selection of a 23 member all-time team for German-born players capped by other country.  The number 23 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the World Cup Finals.  
Fabian Johnson vs Germany

Almost all of the Brazilian players were foreign players who obtained the citizenship of their adoptive countries.  Almost none of the German players were foreign players.  Most of the German-born players were immigrants or sons of immigrants who decided to play for the national teams of their ancestors.  I have already created blog entries for German Turks and German-Americans/American Germans.

GK: Maik Taylor (North Ireland)
Born to a German father and a German mother, he himself served in the British military while playing in the lower division. His best club stints were with Southampton, Fulham and Birmingham, where he played in the Premiership. Internationally, he chose to represent North Ireland, earning 88 caps between 1999 and 2011.

GK: Oka Nikolov (Macedonia)
He spent nineteen seasons with Eintracht Frankfurt, appearing in 413 official games over the course of 13 Bundesliga seasons.  He joined Philadelphia Union in 2013, but failed to appear in any game.  He appeared 5 times for Macedonia, but never in an official game due to his issue with passport.

GK: David Yelldell (USA)
He was the son of American serviceman in Germany.  He played with Stuttgart Kicker, Blackburn Rover, Bayer Leverkusen, TuS Koblenz, MSV Duisburg and now with  SG Sonnenhof Großaspach.  In 2011, he was capped once by the USA.

RB: Cha Du-Ri (South Korea)
Born in Germany while his father Cha Bum-Kun played in the Bundesliga. He had spells with many Bundesliga clubs, including his father's Bayer Leverkusen and Eintracht Frankfurt. Capped 76 times.  He was a member of the squad at the Korea/Japan World Cup Finals.

RB: Ümit Davala  (Turkey)
Born in Germany, he played mainly in Turkey before joining Galatasaray in 1996. He also had stints with both AC Milan and Inter Milan.  He was capped 41 times. He was in the squad of Euro 2000 and the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

CB: Oleg Kuznetsov (USSR/Ukraine)
Born in East Germany, he was capped by the USSR, the CIS and Ukraine.  He was a star defender for the Soviet Union in the late 1980's.  He helped them to reach the Final of the Euro 1988 before losing to Holland.  He also played in the WC Finals in 1986 and 1990, and then, for CIS in the European Championship of 1992.  He played mainly for Dynamo Kyiv.  He played for Rangers in Scot;and after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Oleg Kuznetsov
CB: Ogun Temizkanoglu (Turkey)
He played mostly for Trabzonspor and Fenerbahçe as a central defender. He also played for Konyaspor and Akçaabat Sebatspor. He retired after terminating his contract with Akçaabat Sebatspor on 12 August 2005.  He played for Turkey national football team and was a participant at the 1996 and 2000 UEFA European Championship.  Capped 76 times.

CB: Robert Kovac (Croatia)
He represented Croatia in two World Cups, 2002 and 2006, and has also participated at two European Championships, 2004 and 2008.He was the captain of the national team after his brother Niko retired.  He played a few of the biggest clubs in the world, notably with Bayern Munich and Juvnetus.  

CB/DM: Thomas Dooley (USA)
Dooley was the son of a US serviceman stationed in Germay.  He won the Bundesliga with Kaiserslautern in 1990-1991 and then the UEFA Cup with Schalke 04 in 1996-1997.  Capped 81 times.  He was a key player as the United States reached the 2nd round at the 1994 WC Finals and was the captain at the WC 1998.  He was the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year in 1993.
Thomas Dooley

LB: José Holebas (Greece)
Holebas was born in West Germany to a Greek father and a Uruguayan mother. He played in the lower division in Germany before moving to Olympiakos in Greece. He also played for Roma and Watford.  Capped 38 times.  He played at Euro 2012 and Brazil 2014.

LWB/LW: Fabian Johnson (USA)
Johnson was born in Germany. He is the son of an African-American serviceman.  He began his career with 1860 Munich.  He also played for VfL Wolfsburg and Hoffenheim.  At the time of writing, he is playing for Borussia Mönchengladbach.  Capped by Germany at youth level, he played for USA at the senior level.  He went too Brazil 2014.

CB/DM: Niko Kovac (Croatia)
Born in Germany of Croatian background.  He spent most of his career playing in the Bundesliga.  He earned 83 caps for Croatia and was their captain from 2004 onward.  Robert Kovac's older brother.

DM: Bernd Krauss (Austria)
Krauss started his professional career at local outfit Borussia Dortmund but limited chances there made him move to Austrian Bundesliga side Rapid Wien in 1977. The move proved to be successful, winning the league title (twice) and the domestic cup. He only returned to Germany in 1983 to join Borussia Mönchengladbach where he finished his playing career and took up a coaching post.  He became an Austria and represented Austria 22 times.  He never scored a goal for Austria, but scored an own goal ironically against West Germany.  He played in the 1982 WC Finals.

DM/CM/RM/RB: Hamit Altıntop (Turkey)
He is a versatile player who can play in various position.  He played for Schalke 04, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and now Galatasaray.   He helped Turkey to reach the senifinal at the Euro 2008, where he was voted into the all-tournament team.
Hamit Altıntop
CM: Nuri Sahin (Turkey)
Born in Germany of Turkish ancestry. On 6 August 2005, at the age of 16 years and 334 days, Şahin set a record by becoming the youngest player to have played in the Bundesliga, and on 25 November of the same year became the youngest player to score a goal in the Bundesliga, scoring for Borussia Dortmund against 1. FC Nuremberg.  In 2011, he made a big time to Real Madrid.  He returned to Borussia Dortmund in 2013 after a loan deal with Liverpool.  He earned his first cap in 2005 and scored his first goal ironically against Germany.
Nuri Sahin 
CM: Yıldıray Baştürk (Turkey)
Born in Germany of Turkish ancestry.   He is best remembered for his most successful years at Leverkusen. He was the playmaker of a great Leverkusen that finished second in the German league, the German Cup and the 2002 Champions League Final.  That same year, he led Turkey to the semi-final of the WC in Japan/Korea.

AM: Kevin-Prince Boateng (Ghana)
Born in Germany, his father is from Ghana.  His half brother is Jerome Boateng, who played for Germany.  He represented Germany at the youth level, but switched to Ghana as a senior.  He played in two WC Finals.  In 2010, the Boateng brothers became the first brother to play against each other in a WC Final.  They again played against each other in 2014.  For club football, he played in Germany, England, Italy and Spain.
Kevin Prince Boateng

AM: Robert Prosinecki (Croatia)
He was considered one of the most talented players from Yugoslavia in the 1990's.  In 1987, Prosinečki was named the tournament's best player as Yugoslavia won the World Youth Championship.  He then played for Yugoslavia at the 1990 World Cup and for Croatia at Euro 96 and the 1998 and 2002 World Cups.  For his club career, he played for both Real Madrid and Barcelona, but he failed to establish himself at neither club.
Robert Prosinecki 
LW: Willi Lippens (Holland)
Born near the German-Dutch border to a Dutch father and a German mother, Lippens spent most of his career playing for German clubs. He played for Rot-Weiss Essen from 1965–76 and in 1980–81. Between 1976 and 1979 he played for Borussia Dortmund before leaving to play one season for the Dallas Tornado in the NASL (North American Soccer League).  Lippens, who spoke only very basic Dutch, is the only native German-speaker ever to have played for the Dutch national team. Lippens received several invitations to join the German National selection as well, but always declined as his Dutch father had forbidden him to play for Germany. 

RW/FW: Martin Harnik (Austria)
Born in Germany, his father was from Austria.  He played for Werder Bremen, Stuttgart and Hanover 96.  Capped 61 times.  He played for Austria at Euro 2008 when Austria co-hosted the tournament.  
Martin Harnik

AM: Otto Addo (Ghana)
Born in Germany, he made his name with Hanover 96.  He moved to Borussia Dortmund in 1999.  His injury problems limited his career.  he later played for Mainz and Hamburger.  He represented Ghana at the WC Finals in 2006.

AM: Zvjezdan Misimovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
He played for Bayern Munich, VfL Wolfsburg, Galatasaray and Dynamo Moscow as an attacking midfielder, during his active playing career.  Misimović played for Yugoslavai at the youth level. He is the second most capped player in the history of the Bosnia and Herzegovina, capped 84 times. Furthermore, his 25 international goals makes him his country's second top-goalscorer.  He played at the WC Finals in 2014.

ST: Ivan Klasnic  (Croatia)
He began his career with St. Pauli, and moved to Werder Bremen in 2001 after helping his previous team to promotion to the Bundesliga. He won a league and cup double in 2004. After a season in France with Nantes, he moved to Bolton Wanderers in 2009, initially on loan. After their relegation in 2012, he spent a season back in Germany with Mainz.  Klasnić played also for the Croatian national team. In 2007, Klasnić underwent a kidney transplant, and became the first player to participate in a major tournament (UEFA Euro 2008) after a transplant. He also represented Croatia at UEFA Euro 2004 and the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

ST: Alfred Bickel (Switzerland)
He played as a forward for local club Grasshopper Club Zürich and the Switzerland national team, participating with the latter in the World Cup finals of 1938 and 1950.  Bickel is one of only two footballers ever to participate in World Cups before and after World War II, the other being Sweden's Erik Nilsson.
Alfred Bickel

Honorable Mention
Serkan Calik(Turkey), Berkant Goektan(Turkey), Ilhan Mansiz(Turkey),  John Brooks(USA), Timothy Chandler(USA), Julian Green(USA), Fabian Johnson(USA), Jermaine Jones(USA), Joël Matip (Cameroon), Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting (Cameroon), Ivica Grilic ( Bosnia and Herzegovina), Zlatan Bajramovic(Bosnia-Herzegovina)Muhamed Bešić (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Ermin Bičakčić (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Sead Kolašinac(Bosnia-Herzegovina), Sead Kolašinac (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Ashkan Dejagah (Iran), Anthony Baffoe (Ghana), Jeffrey Schlupp (Ghana), Mikael Forssell (Finland), Ignace Kowalczyk (France),  Stephan Loboue(Ivory Coast), Sead Ramovic (Bosnia-Herzegovina),  Sead Kolašinac (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Ignace Kowalczyk (France).

Squad Explanation
-- Eugen Polanski, Adam Matuszczyk and Sebastian Boenisch were not born in Germany.
-- I avoided the sensitivity of territorial issues left behind by the two World Wars.  This is just a simple blog.  I do not intend to be political about that. 
-- Ewald Dytko, Wilhelm Góra, Erwin Nyc, Friedrich Scherfke and Ernst Wilimowski were a part of the Polish national team at the WC Finals in 1938.  They were born in Silesia when it was still a part of Germany.
-- France brought Ignace Kowalczyk and Oscar Heisserer to the WC Finals in 1938.  Heisserer was born in an area when it was still under Germany, but today, it is now as a part of France.  Ignace Kowalczyk was born in North Rhine-Westphalia. Thus, Kowalczyk was listed on the blog.
-- Oleg Kuznetsov was born in East Germany.


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