Germany’s coach hits back at German fans for jeering Turkish-origin Gündoğan
Germany’s head coach Joachim Loew spoke out against German fans jeering Turkish-origin national player Ilkay Gündoğan for his meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during Friday's 2-1 World Cup warm-up victory over Saudi Arabia, AFP news agency reported.
The Manchester city player created a political storm last month when he - along with fellow German national team member and Arsenal midfielder Mesut Özil - met with Erdogan and handed him a Manchester City jersey signed to "my president". The two, who insist meeting Erdogan was not a political statement, came under heavy criticism by the German Football Federation (DFB) and even met with the German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier over the incident.
The German coach expressed his frustration with with the boos and jeers from German fans when Gündoğan came on for the final 30 minutes of the game that took place in Leverkusen.
"The fact that a national player is booed like that helps nobody," Loew told broadcaster ARD.
"What should Ilkay do now? He took a picture, okay, but he has addressed it with the press and underlined his support for German values. The topic has to be ticked off."
The bulk of criticism directed at the players over their meeting with Erdoğan centered around the Turkish president not sufficiently respecting German values.