Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain Ruled Out of World Cup
Injury has dealt a massive blow to England with the loss of impressive young midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. The previous few weeks have seen this talented player impress playing for both club and country, but this form came to an abrupt end in the 18th minute of Liverpool’s Champions League game against Roma. The team went on to win 5-2, but not before the devastating loss of Oxlade-Chamberlain. He was stretchered off after making a strong challenge on Roma’s Aleksander Kolarov. This scuppered his dreams of making the England World Cup squad 2018.
It was plain to see that it was a serious incident, and after undergoing a scan at Melwood, the medics confirmed the seriousness of the injury. It is still unconfirmed when he’ll be able to play again, but he won’t be returning for the rest of the season for Liverpool and the World Cup. He will be back at the earliest, next season.
A Disappointed Club
Liverpool’s website sadly declared the news when it made the following statement: “Liverpool FC can confirm Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s 2017-2018 season is over for both club and country due to a knee ligament injury sustained against AS Roma on Tuesday evening. The club’s medical team assessed the 24-year old at Melwood on Wednesday morning and they can give no specific timescale upon his return to action at this stage. However, Oxlade-Chamberlain will now begin a rehabilitation programme to enable him to reach full fitness again as soon as possible, returning to action next season.
Liverpool manager, Klopp, described the injury as “really bad”. He is disappointed for the team and Oxlade-Chamberlain as he had been in great form and the team had to face Roma in the return leg without him. Liverpool will also face Real Madrid in the Champion’s League final without this young talent. However, it is the England team that is also suffering. This was a young man who was sure to make a difference on the pitch, but it is now not to be. We wish young Alex the very best and speediest recovery and hope that he returns to fine form as soon as possible!
France Suffers World Cup Blow
It isn’t just England who has suffered at the hands of European club tournaments injury.The French team have confirmed that one of its top defenders, Laurent Koscielny, will miss the World Cup. Koscielny was part of the Arsenal team that lost out to Atletico Madrid in the Europa League; unfortunately, during the match, the French player suffered what is believed to be a ruptured Achilles.
As you can imagine, the team and its coach, Didier Deschamps, are bitterly disappointed. Deschamps himself stated that “It’s a very big blow for the France team”.
The French defender walked away unscathed from the first of the legs at home, but it was on the second leg, at the Wanda Metropolitano, that the medics had to stretcher the beleaguered player off the pitch. It was painful to watch as the 32 year-old awkwardly lost his footing as he tried to tackle Diego Costa. He then clutched his leg and the pain was etched in his face.
France’s Achilles Heel
This was the latest in a long line of Achilles problems for the player, who has been suffering on and off for pretty much the whole season. The saddest part is that the player, who already had 51 caps, was due to announce that he would retire from international football after this World Cup. However, it appears that he will not get to make his final farewell on the international stage.
Coach Deschamps said “I am really very sad for Laurent, because this World Cup was also a very important moment for him in his career and I wish a lot of strength in his comeback, because I’m sure he still has some great things to come.”
In the group stages, France is due to face off against Australia, Denmark and Peru in Group C. The first game is against the Socceroos on June 16th. Unfortunately it will be a game without Koscielny. However, this team is still one of the favourite teams to win the tournament, so there’s no need for the French to feel too blue.
Jerome Boateng’s World Cup in Doubt
Germany has also got a top player who is battling with injury and struggling to be fit in the run up to the tournament. Boateng’s participation in the World Cup is now in question after Real Madrid defeated his club, Bayern Munich 2-1 in the first leg of their Champion’s League semi-final. The defender ran forward and made a long step, before stopping in pain. He was substituted straight after as the injury seemed to be troublesome.
The German FA has since announced that the star player has injured an adductor muscle in his left thigh. Early reports suggest that he may be off the pitch for between four to six weeks. It is certainly unlikely that the player will don the Bayern Munich strip again this season, but whether he makes it to the World Cup is still in question.
Where There’s Hope…
Boateng remained upbeat and happy though, tweeting: “Life is full of setbacks. Live, feel, love, laugh, cry, play, win, lose, stumble, fall, bust stand up again and again. Now it is time to fight to be in Russia. I’ll give it my all.”
Clearly this is a man eager to get fit in time for the World Cup finals. Germany must confirm its preliminary squad, which can include up to 35 players, by May 15th. However, the manager must confirm the final 23-man list by June 4th. Boateng needs to prove he will be able to play in order to ensure inclusion in the list.
Germany, one of the top teams in the World Cup, will play its first game in defence of the title on June 17, where it will face-off against Mexico. It will then take on Sweden and South Korea to make it out of the group stages. Despite this possible loss, bookies such as William Hill and 888sport still make them one of the favourite teams to win though. However, whether Boateng will be there to help Germany on its way is yet to be decided…
Argentina Fears Loss of Biglia
It isn’t just European teams that have been rocked with World Cup injury threats. Over in South America, Argentina is fearful that one of its star midfielders, Lucas Biglia, may not be able to make the World Cup.
The 32 year old player’s tournament is in doubt after he suffered a back injury whilst playing for AC Milan. Argentina will now be waiting with baited breath for news after the news that he has fractured two vertebrae. First tests have highlighted a fracture of the transverse processes of the first two lumbar vertebrae. More examinations will follow to track progress.
It was a bad match for AC Milan all round. Not only did Biglia get such an injury, but the team then suffered a shock defeat by Benevento. This also puts in doubt AC Milan’s qualification for the Europa League next season. However, it is Argentina’s manager, Jorge Sampaoli, who has been the most affected. His team just about managed to qualify for the World Cup finals; with this added worry, the team could be in trouble. Don’t worry, we won’t cry for you Argentina…
Maybe a Double Whammy for Argentina
The news is yet to be confirmed and sources are contradicting each-other; however, Argentinian doctor, Homero D’Agostino, believes that Sergio Aguero, the Man City and Argentine striker, will not be fully recovered in time for the World Cup.
The 29 year old player aggravated a knee injury during the derby against Man U, where the club suffered a defeat. The cause was said to be a hard tackle on Aguero by Ashley Young that went unpunished by referee Martin Atkinson.
This will be a huge knock for Argentina if this is the case; The PFA named him in the Premier League Team of the Year after scoring 30 times for Man City.
The Man City doctor has declared that he believes Aguero will be fit in time for the tournament and has made good progress, but the Argentinian doctor is sceptical that he will be fit for the team’s opening game against Iceland on June 16th. “That a player has undergone arthroscopy with sixty days to go before the World Cup is worrying,” he said. “I imagine that he will not arrive 100 percent fit with the limited time that is left before the World Cup. The anatomy is the Anatomy. The injury is what it is. He can try but I don’t think he will arrive 100 percent.”
On a positive note for the team, it seems that he will make it, albeit not 100% recovered at the start. It’s definitely a scary one for the team; however, we are sure he may well make an appearance for the country. Whether he’s on top form is yet to be discovered…