By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

Di Salvo's Juniors feature six returners and one first-time call-up

Germany U21 Bundestrainer Antonio Di Salvo's latest incarnation of the DFB-Juniors includes six players who return after being left off the last squad in June.

Former FC Bayern München reserve keeper Christian Früchtl earns his first call up to the country's highest youth level.
The German U21s, having already qualified for the next European Championship, have two remaining qualifying group stage matches on the docket in the current international break. Antonio Di Salvo's DFB-Juniors face France next Saturday in Magdeburg and England in Sheffield some four days later.

The latest set of call ups features seven players not present for the recent qualifying matches in June. Keeper Noah Atubolu (SC Freiburg), defender Maximilian Bauer (FC Augsburg), defender Louis Jordan Beyer (FC Burnley), and midfielders Felix Nmecha (VfL Wolfsburg), Reda Khadra (Blackburn Rovers) Yannik Keitel (SC Freiburg) return to the team after being absent last time.

Keeper Christian Früchtl - one of two FC Bayern München goalkeepers to transfer out this summer - has been called up to the U21s for the first time. The new Austria Wien #1 should get a look, even if Di Salvo will also be eager to give his usual top-choice net-minder Atubolu a run out as well. Nico Mantl of RB Salzburg filled in for Atubolu in goal last time.

The squad's normal captain, Jonathan Burkardt of FSV Mainz 05, will be missing due to injury. So too will VfB Stuttgart's Josha Vagnoman. Keeper Luca Philipp (Hoffenheim), and midfielders Tim Lemperle (Köln), Florian Flick (FC Schalke 04), and Patrick Osterhage (VfL Bochum) have not been called up this time.

Defender Armel Bella-Kotchap (FC Southampton) is absent for the joyous reason that Hansi Flick favored the former VfL Bochum center-halve with his very first call-up to the senior squad. 

Reached for comment by German footballing magazine Kicker, Früchtl labeled his call-up "the best thing ever". The 22-year-old has made appearances with six separate German youth levels and declared himself "ecstatic" to finally be able to break through to the top one.

"For the most part, we trust the squad that ensured our participation in the European Championship," Di Salvo noted in a statement, "The games will be a gauge, showing where we currently stand. It's a shame that we're missing some key players for this, but it will give other guys their chance."

Germany's U21s prepare to defend their 2021 European U21 Championship title this coming summer in Romania and Georgia.

The full squad:

Noah Atubolu (SC Freiburg)
Christian Früchtl (Austria Wien)
Nico Mantl (RB Salzburg)

Kilian Fischer (VfL Wolfsburg)
Malick Thiaw (AC Milan)
Noah Katterbach (1. FC Köln)
Maximilian Bauer (FC Augsburg)
Maton Dardai (Hertha BSC)
Yann Aurel Bisseck (AGF Aarhus)
Louis Jordan Beyer (FC Burnley)
Luca Netz (Borussia Mönchengladbach)
Fredrik Jäkel (Arminia Bielefeld)

Tom Krauß (FC Schalke 04)
Ansgar Knauff (Eintracht Frankfurt)
Angelo Stiller (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim)
Reda Khadra (Blackburn Rovers)
Felix Nmecha (VfL Wolfsburg)
Yannik Keitel (SC Freiburg)
Yooussoufa Moukoko (Borussia Dortmund)
Eric Martel (1. FC Köln)
Jan Thielmann (1. FC Köln)
Jamie Leweling (1. FC Union Berlin)
Lazar Samardzic (Udinese)
Faride Alidou (Eintracht Frankfurt)

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