Thursday, July 25, 2024

Kroos not feeling nostalgic, aiming to end career with Euro 2024 glory

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 3 Jul 2024

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Toni Kroos says he is not feeling nostalgic about the possibility of his career ending on Friday when Germany face Spain in the Euro 2024 quarter-finals.

Kroos came out of international retirement to play for Germany on home soil at the European Championships, but announced in May that he would be retiring from football at the end of the tournament.

The German won LaLiga before earning a sixth Champions League title in his farewell game for Real Madrid and is now aiming to finish his career by lifting the Euros trophy for the first time.

With a place in the next round not guaranteed, Kroos could play his final game on Friday should Germany lose to Spain, but that is not something he is thinking about.

“It is the second most important title you can win, and it would have a huge importance for me,” he said. “If I did not see having the chance to do it with the team, I would not have [come back].

“It would be a sensational end, but I have also considered the possibility of it not happening. I am not nostalgic at all and did not bring any treats for [journalists] either.

“I do not expect it to be my last game, so I assume we will see each other again.”

Kroos has been an influential figure in the side already. In the group stage, he completed 95% of his passes (411/431), the highest completion rate by a player to attempt 300+ passes on record in the competition.

After a string of disappointing major tournament results in recent years, with Germany being knocked out of the last two World Cups in the group stage, Kroos is confident they can go all the way this time around.

“There were big doubts about the tournament before it started,” he added. “That’s normal after the previous tournaments we had.

“So we’ve now reached a minimal goal and, whatever the result, we won’t be speaking about a tournament catastrophe here. But anything that comes now is not a bonus.

“We, as a team, have the goal to win the tournament. So, it is not a bonus, but we are at a stage in the tournament we wanted to reach.

“We should be satisfied, but the demand within the team is to progress further, and we are convinced we can do it.”

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