Bayern Munich coach Thomas Tuchel on Friday praised captain Manuel Neuer on the goalkeeper’s recall to the Germany squad for the first time in 15 months.
Neuer last played for Germany at the World Cup in Qatar in December 2022, breaking his leg shortly after and missing almost a year of football.
Germany coach Julian Nagelsmann said Thursday no decision had been made on whether Neuer or Barcelona keeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen would be the team’s number one.
The 2014 World Cup winner returned to the field for a home match against Darmstadt in October – Bayern’s same opponents this weekend. “Once he made it back on the pitch I really knew he’d be back for the home Euros. His goalkeeping play, his anticipation is really unique. He’s in a league of his own.”
Tuchel said “what the doctors said really shocked me” about Neuer’s injury, saying the goalkeeper’s return was “really unique... one in 20,000 – maybe one in 20 million.” “I wouldn’t have made it back”. The 37-year-old had two reasons to celebrate on Thursday. He became a father for the first time during Nagelsmann’s squad announcement. “Manu will come back tomorrow and will stand in the goal inspired by fatherhood.”

Spain call up for Barca defender Pau Cubarsi, 17
Teenage central defender Pau Cubarsi, who has played just a handful of games for Barcelona, was on Friday called up for Spain’s friendly internationals against Colombia and Brazil.
Should coach Luis de la Fuente hand Cubarsi some time on the pitch, the 17-year-old will become the youngest central defender to play for Spain, surpassing Sergio Ramos who debuted when he was 18.
Cubarsi was integrated into Barca’s first team this season and made his Champions League debut as a starter in the club’s 3-1 victory over Napoli on Tuesday, a result that guaranteed the Catalan club a quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain.
He has made nine appearances for Barcelona in La Liga and two more in the Copa del Rey. Spain play Colombia in London on March 22 and Brazil four days later at Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

Australia, Uzbekistan set to host Women’s Asian Cup
Australia is set to host the Women’s Asian Cup in 2026 and Uzbekistan is expected to stage the tournament in 2029, the Asian Football Confederation said on Friday.
Australia, which co-hosted the Women’s World Cup with New Zealand last year, was the only country left in the running for 2026 after Uzbekistan, Jordan and Saudi Arabia all withdrew from the process.
“Australia and the Uzbekistan Football Association (UFA) have been recommended as the host associations of the 2026 and 2029 editions of the AFC Women’s Asian Cup respectively by the AFC Women’s Football Committee,” the AFC said in a statement.
The committee met in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on Friday.
“While certain formalities of the bidding process are in the midst of being finalised, the committee has mandated the AFC administration to confirm the award of the hosting rights once all requirements are met.”
Uzbekistan, the sole bidder for the 2029 edition, is set to be the first Central Asian nation to host the Women’s Asian Cup.