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Germany’s Ilkay Gundogan ruled out of 2014 World Cup

Apr 10, 2014, 1:35 PM EDT

Germany Soccer Champions League AP

Germany midfielder Ilkay Gundogan has been ruled out of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, according to Goal.com.

The decision was made public earlier today by Gundogan’s club coach at Borussia Dortmund, Jurgen Klopp, who noted that persistent back issues will keep the 23-year-old home this summer.

“Ilkay will not play at the World Cup,” said Klopp.

“It is very hard for him to deal with. His back is better, it is all good, but it takes time to recover completely. We just have to wait.”

The holding midfielder, known for immaculate passing, artistry on the ball and the ability to score big goals, first broke into BVB in 2012 when he helped the club win the league and Cup double. Gundogan then rose to prominence last season during Dortmund’s memorable run to the UEFA Champions League, where he scored a classy penalty in the final against Bayern Munich.

Widely considered one of the best young midfielders in the world, Gundogan had turned the heads of Real Madrid and Manchester United before a back injury suffered last August limited him to only three club appearances this season.

As has been the case for Dortmund the loss of Gundogan will be a blow to Germany, who is hoping for a big result in this summer’s World Cup. Die Mannschaft have been placed in Group G alongside Ghana, Portugal and the United States.