Soccer-World Cup spot is no issue, says Goetze on Bundesliga return

Soccer Football - Bundesliga - Eintracht Frankfurt Press conference - Frankfurt, Germany - June 28, 2022 Eintracht Frankfurt's Mario Gotze during the press conference REUTERS/Heiko Becker

FRANKFURT, Germany (Reuters) - World Cup winner Mario Goetze is not thinking about reclaiming a spot in the Germany team ahead of the Qatar World Cup in November, now that he is back in the Bundesliga with Eintracht Frankfurt.

The 30-year-old attacking midfielder, who scored the winning goal in the 2014 World Cup final against Argentina, signed a contract with Europa League winners Eintracht last week after two years at PSV Eindhoven.

He rediscovered his form at the Dutch club following his 2020 move from Borussia Dortmund, prompting speculation about a possible return to the national team in time for the World Cup later in the year.

Goetze received a congratulatory message from Germany coach Hansi Flick for his transfer to Eintracht but said the World Cup was too far away to be an issue for him.

"The most important thing is that I improve and am successful with the team. The rest will come," Goetze told a news conference on Tuesday.

"My last international match was a few years ago (2017). At the time I had a specific role and it was all very near to me. Currently, that is not an issue for me."

Eintracht will be competing in the Champions League group stage next season as Europa League winners.

The World Cup will be held in November and December in Qatar.

"My focus is on matches and the club and to get the most out of my performances. All the rest is not in my head because it is too far into the future," Goetze said.

The attacking midfielder, who started his career at Dortmund before joining Bayern Munich for a three-year spell in 2013 and then returning to Dortmund, has earned 63 caps in total and scored 17 goals.

A five-time German league champion, Goetze struggled to hold down starting spots both at Bayern and Dortmund in his second spell, prompting a move to Eindhoven.

The league starts on Aug. 5 with Eintracht taking on champions Bayern.

(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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