Berlin - Germany coach Joachim Loew on Friday recalled Bastian Schweinsteiger, who has not played for the national side since their World Cup triumph, for a friendly against Australia and a Euro 2016 qualifier in Georgia.
The Bayern Munich midfielder was named captain when Philipp Lahm retired from the national team after winning the world title in Brazil last July but had yet to play after being sidelined through a back injury.
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"Bastian is our captain. We need his leadership skills, on and off the pitch," explained Loew.
Ilkay Guendogan and defender Holger Badstuber, who both missed the World Cup through injury, are also returning alongside 16 of the heroes from Brazil, including Manuel Neuer, Thomas Mueller and Mario Goetze.
The 121-times capped Lukas Podolski was also picked in the 23-man squad despite poor recent form with Inter Milan.
Germany host Australia in a Kaiserslautern friendly on March 25 with a Euro 2016 qualifier scheduled for Georgia four days later.
Germany are second in Group D, three points behind leaders Poland, after a stuttering start to the qualifying campaign.
Goalkeepers: Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich), Roman Weidenfeller (Dortmund), Ron-Robert Zieler (Hanover)
Defenders: Holger Badstuber (Bayern Munich), Jerome Boateng (Bayern Munich), Jonas Hector (Cologne), Benedikt Hoewedes (Schalke), Mats Hummels (Dortmund), Shkodran Mustafi (Valencia/ESP), Sebastian Rudy (Hoffenheim)
Midfielders: Karim Bellarabi (Bayer Leverkusen), Ilkay Guendogan (Dortmund), Sami Khedira (Real Madrid/ESP), Christoph Kramer (Moenchengladbach), Toni Kroos (Real Madrid/ESP), Thomas Mueller (Bayern Munich), Mesut Oezil (Arsenal/ENG), Lukas Podolski (Inter Milan/ITA), Marco Reus (Dortmund), Andre Schrrle (Wolfsburg), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Bayern Munich)
Forwards: Mario Goetze (Bayern Munich), Max Kruse (Moenchengladbach)