Lars Bender ruled out of World Cup

The Bayer Leverkusen midfielder will miss this summer's tournament in Brazil after picking up a thigh injury in training
Germany coach Joachim Low will have to make do without the services of Lars Bender at World Cup 2014 after he withdrew from the squad with a thigh problem.

The 25-year-old was the only Bayer Leverkusen player in Low's 30-man provisional squad, but Bender now misses out after picking up a knock in training.

The Nationalelf have opted against calling up a replacement for the Leverkusen star.

"If someone is forced to withdraw from the team this short before the start of the tournament, it's always very disappointing for all involved," Low commented on Bender's withdrawal.

"I feel really sorry for Lars because I know that he was determined to make it to Brazil. He is an example to follow for everybody."

Bender made his Germany debut in September 2011 and was part of the team that made it to the semi-finals at Euro 2012.

Germany meet Portugal, Ghana and USA in Group G at this summer's World Cup.