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Ottl and Sosa stake strong selection claims

Coach Jürgen Klinsmann has often waxed lyrical about the quality of Andreas Ottl and José Ernesto Sosa. The two squad players, both staking strong claims for more regular inclusion in the first team, repaid the boss’s faith with encouraging displays in Tuesday’s home draw with Barcelona. Ottl and Sosa now provide more than useful options to the coach as the season approaches its climax. “You’re always going to get injuries in football, and it’s been happening to us. That makes the business of selection a lot more open, and Sosa has taken his chance. Andi Ottl is also on the point of claiming a place in the team,” Klinsmann reiterated as he surveyed the pair’s impressive performances and attitude over recent weeks.

Sosa has surprised many observers with his recent emergence from the depths of the squad. The 23-year-old Argentine has required time to settle in Munich, and was close to going out on loan in the winter in order to gain much-needed match practice. However, a deal with Palermo fell through at the last minute. “You’ll get your playing time here as soon as the situation allows it,” Klinsmann told the player at the time.

Sosa’s application and effort in training have brought about that very situation earlier than many expected. “Over the last few months, we’ve been attempting to ensure the players sense that if they consistently work hard on themselves, throw themselves into it 100 percent, and focus completely on their job, they’ll have our full support in initiating a genuine battle for places,” Klinsmann explained.