BERLIN - Schalke 04 striker Kevin Kuranyi saw his World Cup dreams dashed for a second time on Monday when coach Joachim Low ruled him out of Germany's squad despite his spectacular Bundesliga season.
Kuranyi, 28, who was also dropped just before the 2006 World Cup in Germany by then coach Jurgen Klinsmann, was largely expected to return after being banned in October 2008.
He had walked out of the team during a World Cup qualifier against Russia after being dropped from the squad, with Low vowing at the time never to call him up again.
"It was my dream to play in a World Cup ever since I was a kid, like every footballer. Now that dream has gone for the second time," Kuranyi wrote on his personal website.
His sensational season at Schalke, where he scored a personal best 18 goals and steered them to a Champions League spot, had put him back in contention for a recall and piled pressure on Low to reverse his decision.
But the coach refused to budge.
"The disciplinary affair in October 2008 did not play a role for me," Low said in a statement.
"It would not have posed a problem to give him another chance but in the discussions among the coaches, we came to the conclusion that we had a different idea of the World Cup squad in terms of tactics and players."
"I told Kevin that today and I think he had a great season and is an outstanding professional," Low said.
Germany will unveil their preliminary World Cup squad of 30 players on Thursday and Low will cut it down to 23 by the June 1 deadline.
"I know it was stupid when I walked out of the stadium against Russia at half time," Kuranyi said. "That is why I personally and publicly apologised and this season I gave everything I had."
"Unfortunately it was not enough. But it is the coach's decision and I accept it and respect it."
Kuranyi, who has scored 19 times in 52 international appearances, has been the form German striker this year, overshadowing likely World Cup strikers Lukas Podolski, Miroslav Klose and Mario Gomez, who have managed only 15 league goals between them.
Germany have been drawn in Group D of the June 11-July 11 World Cup in South Africa alongside Serbia, Ghana and Australia.