Timo Werner (l.), James Rodriguez (c.) and Marco Reus (r.) are three of the biggest stars from the biggest clubs in the Bundesliga at the World Cup this summer. - © © DFL DEUTSCHE FUSSBALL LIGA
Timo Werner (l.), James Rodriguez (c.) and Marco Reus (r.) are three of the biggest stars from the biggest clubs in the Bundesliga at the World Cup this summer. - © © DFL DEUTSCHE FUSSBALL LIGA

The Bundesliga stars at the 2018 World Cup: club-by-club guide

The 2017/18 Bundesliga season may be over, but there is still plenty of football to come this summer, with almost all of the German top-flight's clubs having a vested interest in what will be happening at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

The ball gets rolling in Russia on June 14, with the final act a month later on July 15. Will any of the Bundesliga's stars be involved from start to finish? Who will be back for pre-season training, or who will be needing a longer holiday this summer?

bundesliga.com has compiled a convenient club-by-club guide to all the Bundesliga stars set to feature in Russia this summer, in order of league table position from 2017/18.

Bayern Munich stars Robert Lewandowski (l.) and James Rodriguez (r.) will be opponents in Russia as Poland face Colombia - © imago

Bayern Munich

James Rodriguez (Colombia), Corentin Tolisso (France), Jerome Boateng, Mats Hummels, Joshua Kimmich, Thomas Müller, Sebastian Rudy, Niklas Süle, Manuel Neuer (Germany), Robert Lewandowski (Poland), Thiago Alcantara (Spain)

The Bundesliga champions unsurprisingly have the biggest contingent of players involved in the World Cup this summer, and arguably the highest probability of seeing many return at an advanced stage of pre-season training. No fewer than seven stars will be bidding to go all the way with defending champions Germany, while James Rodriguez and Thiago Alcantara will have high hopes with Colombia and Spain respectively. There's no rest for three-time Bundesliga top-scorer Robert Lewandowski, either.


Marko Pjaca (Croatia), Leon Goretzka (Germany), Amine Harit (Morocco), Breel Embolo (Switzerland),

Marko Pjaca and Leon Goretzka will not be returning to Gelsenkirchen for preseason, with the Croatian midfielder heading back to Juventus and the German talent moving to Munich this summer, but in Amine Harit and Breel Embolo, the Royal Blues have two players they hope will return injury-free.


Andrej Kramaric (Croatia), Steven Zuber

Croatia's hopes of glory in Russia may well be pinned on the shoulders of Hoffenheim forward Andrej Kramaric, who found the back of the net 13 times this season. Meanwhile, Steven Zuber is one of many Bundesliga stars selected by Switzerland.

Watch: Four Bundesliga stars in form for the World Cup!

Borussia Dortmund

Michy Batshuayi (Belgium), Shinji Kagawa (Japan), Lukasz Piszczek (Poland), Raphael Guerreiro (Portugal), Manuel Akanji, Roman Bürki (Switzerland)

Dortmund have many eggs in many baskets, with Michy Batshuayi's Belgium regarded as one of the favourites to spend an entire month in Russia. The experienced Shinji Kagawa and Lukasz Piszczek will enjoy potentially their final World Cup, while Swiss flags will also be raised around Signal Iduna Park if Manuel Akanji and Roman Bürki go all the way.

Bayer Leverkusen

Tin Jedvaj (Croatia), Julian Brandt(Germany)

Leverkusen may be concerned if Germany do successfully defend their crown since one of the youngest members of Löw's squad will be wearing their colours next season: Julian Brandt will surely be able to put the strains of a prolonged campaign behind them, though, and bring their enthusiasm back to the BayArena ahead of a campaign which will see the return of Europa League football to Leverkusen. Tin Jedvaj is also on duty with Croatia, who are in a tough group with Argentina, Iceland and Nigeria.

RB Leipzig

Yussuf Poulsen (Denmark), Yvon Mvogo (Switzerland), Timo Werner (Germany), Emil Forsberg (Sweden)

Some of the most talented attacking players on show at the World Cup will be arriving from Leipzig, with Germany's Timo Werner, Sweden's Emil Forsberg and Denmark's Yussuf Poulsen. The Bundesliga club may nevertheless be hopeful they will not be involved for too long – they have a Europa League qualifier to prepare on July 26 – just 11 days after the final.

Timo Werner's form for club and country this season means he is set to lead Germany's attack in Russia. - © imago

VfB Stuttgart

Benjamin Pavard (France), Mario Gomez (Germany)

Stuttgart's successful second half of the season has seen some of their star players earn calls to the World Cup, with Mario Gomez spearheading Germany's attack and Benjamin Pavard out to keep France's defence tight.

Eintracht Frankfurt

Ante Rebic (Croatia), Makoto Hasebe (Japan), Marco Fabian, Carlos Salcedo (Mexico), Luka Jovic (Serbia), Gelson Fernandes (Switzerland)

DFB Cup winners Eintracht Frankfurt will be sending seven happy players to Russia, with a medal already around their necks. Luka Jovic's Serbia will lock horns with Gelson Fernandes' Switzerland in the group stage, while Marco Fabian and Carlos Salcedo can expect to meet many familiar Bundesliga faces when they face Germany in Group F.

Borussia Mönchengladbach

Thorgan Hazard (Belgium), Jannik Vestergaard (Denmark), Matthias Ginter (Germany), Josip Drmic, Nico Elvedi, Yann Sommer, Denis Zakaria (Switzerland)

With no European football on the agenda next season, Gladbach's seven World Cup envoys can focus their efforts fully on their countries' cause in Russia, including Swiss quartet Nico Elvedi, Yann Sommer, Josip Drmic and Denis Zakaria. Thorgan Hazard features in a star-studded Belgium attack, while Jannik Vestergaard will prop up Denmark's hopes.

Thorgan Hazard (l.) is set to be lining up alongside his brother Eden (r.) in their first World Cup together. - © imago

Hertha Berlin

Mathew Leckie (Australia), Marvin Plattenhardt (Germany), Genki Haraguchi (Japan)

Hertha have a trio in action in Russia, with Mathew Leckie one of Australia's biggest names, and certainly one to watch.

Werder Bremen

Thomas Delaney (Denmark), Milos Veljkovic (Serbia), Ludwig Augustinsson (Sweden), Yuya Osako (Japan)

Denmark's playmaker Thomas Delaney will be tasked with keeping Hertha's Leckie quiet in their group game, while Milos Vejkovic could face many Bundesliga rivals when his Serbia face Switzerland.


Alfred Finnbogason (Iceland), Ja-Cheol Koo (South Korea)

The Ice-man Finnbogason will be leading the line for debutants Iceland, while Ja-Cheol Koo can expect to be a key player for South Korea.

Hannover 96

Salif Sane (Senegal)

Salif Sane has said goodbye to the Hannover faithful prior to his move to Schalke, but they will get one final look at him with Senegal in Russia. New recruit Takuma Asano had been in Japan's preliminary squad, but has failed to make the final 23.


Yoshinori Muto (Japan)

Mainz will have one player missing the roll call at the start of pre-season training, but Yoshinori Muto will be excused for representing Japan.




Koen Casteels (Belgium), Jakub Blaszczykowski (Poland)

Two members of the Wolfpack will be expecting to spend a long time in Russia, with Belgium, and Poland expected to progress beyond the groups. That means Koen Casteels and Jakub Blaszczykowski will have to wait before meeting their club's new sporting director Jörg Schmadtke.



Fortuna Düsseldorf

Takashi Usami (Japan)

Promoted Düsseldorf also have a vested interest in the World Cup, with Takashi Usami on duty for Japan. Better for them, then, that they were promoted to the top flight, where the season starts later than it does for Bundesliga 2.

Despite relegation from the Bundesliga, Jonas Hector will remain at Cologne and is set to start for Germany at the World Cup. - © gettyimages / Matthias Hangst


Gotoku Sakai (Japan), Filip Kostic (Serbia), Albin Ekdal (Sweden)

Out of the Bundesliga for the first time in the northern Germany club's history, Hamburg trio Gotoku Sakai, Filip Kostic and Albin Ekdal will be looking to get a smile back on their faces in Russia.


Jonas Hector (Germany)

Cologne could well have a World Cup winner in their ranks when they begin their Bundesliga 2 campaign, with club captain Jonas Hector gunning for glory with Germany this summer.

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