Low: Germany less reliant on Schweinsteiger now

The 55-year-old boss believes he no longer needs to start the Manchester United midfielder in every game, while he is already laying plans to defend the World Cup in 2018

Germany boss Joachim Low has suggested he will use captain Bastian Schweinsteiger sparingly over the coming years amid concerns over the midfielder's displays for new club Manchester United.

The 31-year-old completed 90 minutes for the first time this season as the Red Devils fell to a 2-1 defeat against Swansea City, with some critics highlighting his lack of mobility and fitness.

Low, though, remains convinced of Schweinsteiger's importance to Die Mannschaft, but ackowledges that he must pick and choose when he fields his skipper to ensure he is always operating at 100 per cent.

"Maybe I no longer need Bastian in every match now," Low told Suddeutsche Zeitung.

"I need him when it is important for us. Then I know that he performs and assumes responsibility and his will to win is like no other."

Germany are in the midst of Euro 2016 qualifying and take on Poland on Friday before facing Scotland three days later, but Low says he is just as focused on plotting how he can defend his nation's World Cup title.

"The European Championships in France is for us a great goal but our thoughts go already beyond in all plans," he continued. "We have the 2018 World Cup in mind - Mission: Title Defence."

On the subject of Germany's upcoming games, he added: "The decisive factor for me is that we can be on our own as leaders.

"The goal is to win both games. I know many players of my team for many years and I know that, in games like against Poland, they are motivated to the tips of their hair."

Poland lead Group D with 14 points heading into the match, with Germany (13) in second and Scotland (11) in third.

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