Lukas Podolski not happy with 'mascot' jibe

The German has been referred to as the 'mascot' due to his lack of playing time in recent years

Lukas Podolski has completely rejected the claim that he is merely a 'mascot' for Germany's national side.

The 30-year-old's inclusion in the squad raised some eyebrows with many in Germany who would rather have Julian Brandt, Karim Bellarabi or even a half-fit Marco Reus to call upon when the going gets tough in France during the summer.

Podolski's last action came as a late substitute during Germany's 3-2 loss to England and last played prior to that in April of 2015. 

“I think it’s totally disrespectful! I have played over 100 internationals and I don’t deserve (to be called) that,” he said on Wednesday at Germany’s pre-Euro 2016 training camp in Ascona, Switzerland.

“I can understand any discussion about me as a person, only ‘mascot’ has no part in that.

“It’s outrageous to call me that.”

Podolski was quick to refer to his good form in Turkey this year where he scored 17 times in 43 appearences for Galatasaray.

“I had a good season in Turkey with a lot of goals and assists, plus the cup win to crown it off,” he said.

“I’ve joined the (German) team in top form and can help the team with my experience of playing at seven tournaments.”

Podolski is just one goal shy of tying Jurgen Klinsmann's record of five goals for Germany at European Championships.