The star-studded 13 Germany could select if they chose from eligible players including Super League, NRL stars

Louis Chapman Coombe

Over the next few months, we’re looking at the dream side each nation could select if they were able to choose from every eligible player. Next up, it’s Germany!

In these feature pieces, we are selecting a starting 13 to represent a particular country. This can include players born there, those with heritage to the nation or even those eligible via residency rules.

It doesn’t matter where players ply their trade on the domestic front, be it in Super League, the NRL or even elsewhere. These line-ups are made in collaboration with He Can Play For on X (formerly Twitter). Make sure to check their page out!

So, without further ado, here’s Germany’s dream 13…

1. Scott Drinkwater (North Queensland Cowboys)

Scott Drinkwater in action for the Cowboys

Kicking off our ultimate German-qualified is North Queensland Cowboys fullback Scott Drinkwater. Brother of Warrington star Josh (who we’ll come onto later), Scott Drinkwater has racked up an impressive 110 appearances in the NRL since making his debut in 2018. He is yet to win a cap for the Kangaroos yet, but he qualifies for Germany via his grandfather.

2. Tom Johnstone (Catalans Dragons)

Tom Johnstone Catalans Dragons Super League Alamy
Tom Johnstone in action for Catalans

The first Super League representative in our 13 is Catalans Dragons winger Tom Johnstone, who was actually born in Germany. The former Wakefield Trinity man has 149 Super League appearances to his name following his debut in 2015, and boasts an impressive try-scoring record with 115 to his name. He also made his England debut back in 2018, and currently has four caps to his name.

3. Brent Naden (Wests Tigers)

Brent Naden
Wests Tigers centre Brent Naden. Pic – Alamy

Current West Tigers centre Brent Naden lines up in the number 3 jersey for our German 13. The centre made his NRL debut for the Penrith Panthers in 2019, and has over 70 NRL appearances to his name. He was also a part of the Panthers Premiership-winning squad in 2021, and has also represented the Indigenous All-Stars in 2022 and 2023.

As revealed by Love Rugby League, Naden could be on his way to Catalans Dragons in 2025.

4. Asu Kepaoa (Wests Tigers)

Joining Naden in the centres is fellow West Tigers back Asu Kepaoa. Kepaoa made his Wests debut in 2020, and has made 43 NRL appearances for the club since. He has also featured in the New South Wales Cup for North Sydney Bears, Wests Tigers reserves and Penrith reserves as well.

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5. Ryan Millar (Sheffield Eagles)

Experienced Championship man Ryan Miller made his Sheffield Eagles debut in 2015, and remained at the club until 2021 when he joined Bradford Bulls. After just one year at Odsal, he was snapped up by Widnes, but only made eight appearances for the Vikings prior to re-joining Sheffield this season.

6. Brad Schneider (Penrith Panthers)

Brad Schneider celebrates winning drop goal
Brad Schneider celebrates his winning drop goal in Hull KR’s Challenge Cup semi-final triumph – Alamy

Penrith man Brad Schneider takes our number 6 jersey. Schneider made his NRL debut in 2021 for the Canberra Raiders, and went onto make 12 appearances for the club. He joined Hull KR on loan part-way through the 2023 season, and quickly became a fan favourite.

He slotted a drop-goal in Golden Point Extra Time to take the Robins to the Challenge Cup final, and was a key part of the squad that reached the Super League semi-finals too. Schneider joined Penrith this season, and has made seven appearances to date.

7. Josh Drinkwater (Warrington Wolves)

Josh Drinkwater
Warrington Wolves’ Josh Drinkwater (ball in hand) pictured in action during the 2024 Challenge Cup final

Joining his brother, Scott, in our German 13 is Warrington Wolves half-back Josh Drinkwater. After moving to London Broncos in 2014, Drinkwater has racked up an impressive 180 Super League appearances across spells at Leigh, Hull KR and Catalans Dragons. He was also a part of the Les Dracs squad that lifted the Challenge Cup in 2019.

Drinkwater has also previously told Love Rugby League he would be open to representing Germany in the future alongside his brother.

8. Aaron Pene (Leigh Leopards)

Aaron Pene Melbourne Storm Leigh Leopards Alamy
Aaron Pene has joined Leigh Leopards from Melbourne Storm

Australian-native Aaron Pene could one day represent Germany, due to his family heritage. Pene made his NRL debut for Melbourne in 2020, and in between a one-year stint at the New Zealand Warriors, made 32 appearances in the competition. He made the switch to Leigh Leopards earlier this month, and made his debut for the club against Leeds Rhinos last week.

9. Ben White (Batley Bulldogs)

Batley Bulldogs player Ben White
Ben White in action for Batley

We’ve had to move Batley Bulldogs halfback Ben White out of position slightly, however he has played hooker before. White made his professional debut for Leeds Rhinos in 2014, and after spells at Swinton, Halifax and Barrow returned to West Yorkshire with Batley Bulldogs. He has also won one cap for Germany in 2022.

READ MORE: Leigh Leopards, Salford Red Devils and Hull KR stars in Exiles 2024 team if concept returned

10. Toby Couchman (St George Illawarra Dragons)

One half of the Couchman twins, 20-year-old prop Toby Couchman made his NRL debut for St George Illawarra Dragons last year. Since his debut, he already has 19 appearances to his name in the competition. He also has some experience in the New South Wales Cup, with 15 appearances for the St George Illawarra reserves. He qualifies through German heritage.

11. Jimmy Keinhorst (London Broncos)

Jimmy Keinhorst Hull KR News Images
Photo: James Heaton/News Images

The final British league representative in our squad is former Hull KR man Jimmy Keinhorst, however he has had to shift into the back-row. He made his Super League debut for Leeds Rhinos in 2012, and across spells with Wakefield Trinity, Hull KR and Castleford Tigers has made 144 appearances in the top division. He left Craven Park this off-season to join York.

Keinhorst also has 10 Germany caps to his name after making his debut in 2007. He also has two caps for Germany in rugby union.

12. Ryan Couchman (St George Illawarra Dragons)

Ryan Couchman joins twin brother Toby Couchman in our team. Ryan also made his NRL debut in 2023, and has seven appearances to date. He also made his maiden New South Wales Cup appearance in 2023, and has tallied 33 appearances to date, including a haul of six tries. Like his twin, he qualifies through German heritage.

13. Josh Coric (St George Illawarra Dragons)

Rounding off our German-qualified 13, and the third St George Illawarra Dragons man in the pack, is Josh Coric. Coric is yet to make his NRL debut for the club, however he has featured 31 times in the New South Wales Cup after making his reserve grade debut in 2021. Usually deployed in the front-row, Coric again qualifies through German heritage.

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