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Euro 2024: Germany could head into last 16 without Antonio Rudiger

Centre-back Antonio Rudiger could miss Germany's last 16 tie at Euro 2024, potentially compounding their defensive woes.

The Real Madrid man's regular partner in defence, Bayer Leverkusen's Jonathan Tah, is already unavailable for the next game due to a yellow card suspension.

Having played every minute of the group stage, where Germany topped Group A ahead of Switzerland, Rudiger is now struggling to recover from a thigh injury.

"He has a bit of a problem with his thigh. We'll have to see. I hope it's nothing serious. We'll see. That could be quite problematic," said Germany head coach Julian Nagelsmann.

Nico Schlotterbeck of Borussia Dortmund, who replaced Tah in the draw against Switzerland, is expected to start in the heart of the German defence.

Stuttgart's Waldemar Anton would likely step in for Rudiger. This would leave Germany with a much less experienced back-line, as Anton has only two international caps.

Anton earned a call-up for Euro 2024 after a standout Bundesliga season, where he helped Stuttgart secure a second-place finish.

Germany, awaiting their last 16 opponents, will face the runner-up from Group C, which could be England, Denmark, Slovenia, or Serbia depending on Tuesday night's results.

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