FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Germany coach Joachim Loew has extended his contract until by another two years until 2018.

The German Football Federation says the new deal includes the 2018 World Cup in Russia, where Germany would be defending champions if the team qualifies.

Loew took over as Germany coach from Juergen Klinsmann after the 2006 World Cup in Germany. His first title was last year's World Cup in Brazil.

Germany got off to a slow start in qualifying for next year's European Championship in France and trails Poland by three points after four matches.

Loew says that "confirming the title from Brazil remains an incredible challenge and motivation" and that Germany's young team is "not at the end of its development."

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.