Veteran striker Mario Gomez has retired from international duty in the wake of Germany’s disastrous World Cup campaign.
Winners in 2014, Joachim Low’s men suffered the ultimate embarrassment as they crashed out in the group stage while bottom of their table.
Mesut Ozil has already turned his back on Germany after a controversial bust-up with the country’s football federation.
And Gomez, 33, has now decided to also take himself out of the running, which he feels will benefit younger players coming through the system.
He wrote on his Facebook account: “For me, a huge dream has come true with the World Cup in Russia. Even if the cut-off and the pathetic departure in the group-round [meant] we all failed.
“My entire career, I was allowed to play for the German national team. But when I had to watch 2014 [it] hurt, I finally realised how much [I was missing] the team and what a great honour it is for me to [play] for such a team.
“I wanted to experience these moments, these emotions. As a team and for me! I gave it all!
“With the team in 2016 and the 2018 World Cup, I was allowed to participate in two other big tournaments. I feel the greatest gratitude for this, even if the expectations of the last tournament could not be met.
“You can’t always go out as a winner. My time in the national team was not always easy, not always successful and yet beautiful!
“I’ve met a lot of people with whom I will be very connected. Now it’s time to make room and give the many young boys the opportunity to fulfil their dream, prove themselves, collect experiences and reach the best for Germany.”