Ilia Gruev also enjoyed a successful international break. It was the midfielder’s first ever senior call-up, and made his debut right away, playing 72 minutes as Bulgaria beat Gibraltar 5-1, before registering the full 90 as they went on to get an important 1-0 win against North Macedonia. Bulgaria finished second in Group 4 of League, only behind Georgia.
Romano Schmid was another Werder man to make his debut, having been subbed on for Austria as they were defeated 2-0 by France. The 22-year-old then made another brief appearance in a 3-1 defeat to Croatia. “Of course, that was something special. I hope to make further appearances down the line,” Schmid said after his return to Bremen on Wednesday. Werder skipper Marco Friedl was unused in both of Austria’s matches. Unfortunately for Schmid and Friedl, Austria were relegated from League A, finishing bottom on four points.
Jiri Pavlenka also went unused during the international break, firstly on the bench as the Czech Republic were defeated 4-0 by Portugal, and then also 2-1 by Switzerland on Tuesday, despite a change of goalkeeper at half-time. The Czech side were relegated from League A after finishing bottom of Group 2.