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Slovakia captain Marek Hamsik could miss Ireland game

30 August 2011 2,499 views No Comment Written by Ronan

Slovakian head coach Vladimir Weiss confirmed at a press conference yesterday that his side could be without their captain for their upcoming Euro 2012 qualifiers against the Republic of Ireland and Armenia.

The Napoli midfielder has 8 goals in 47 international appearances and is seen as a crucial player in the Slovakian side. Yesterday Weiss reported on the fitness of his squad, singling out Hamsik as a definite concern. “Little Vlad [ his son Vladimir Weiss] and [Peter] Pekarík are undergoing tests at the moment. [Martin] Skrtel got time off and will join us tomorrow. [Jan] Durica also will come over soon. [Marian] Kello is the same. But it’s bad news from Hamsik. He got a knock in a friendly with Palermo, and it’s unlikely that he’ll face Ireland.

“I called him Sunday night and told me it’s worse than it seemed. He could not even walk properly. He is a brilliant footballer, but is not irreplaceable. We will find someone to stand in, we have managed to win games without him in the past. I do not know yet who will replace him as captain. Football is a team sport and I hope that the players in the match against Ireland come with clear heads and big hearts.”

Goalkeeper Marian Kello went off injured playing for Hearts at the weekend, and is a doubt to start the match on Friday. He had tests last night to assess the extent of his injury.

“The Irish are a quality team,” Weiss said. “They have gone several matches unbeaten. Hopefully we can end their series. I expect it will be a difficult match. We have our problems,but so do the Irish. No one will ask me after the game ‘who played, why he played, or who was missing?’. The result is all that is important and we will do everything in our power to play as well as we can.”

The concerns over Hamsik’s injury lessened somewhat this morning, with Slovakian media reporting that their captain would link up with the squad after an MRI scan showed just a blood clot in his knee. However, the player is still in some pain, and his situation will be closely monitored by the Slovakian FA doctors, who think there may be a chance he could make the bench for Friday’s match.

There was good news from the Republic of Ireland camp, where Giovanni Trapattoni indicated that Aiden McGeady would be 100% fit to start on Friday. John O’Shea, Shay Given, and Keith Treacy all arrived this morning, while Darren O’Dea, Shane Long and Sean St Ledger sat out yesterday’s session but were back in action today.

Kevin Kilbane, who is just five consecutive competitive games away from beating Billy Wright’s record sat out today’s training session with a back injury. However, Marco Tardelli feels the player will be fit enough to start on Friday. “There’s a problem with Kevin Kilbane in the back, but the other players are okay,” Tardelli said in a press conference this afternoon.”It’s good that it’s only Tuesday and I think that it’s possible that Kilbane will feel well in time for the game. I think it’s possible he will be able to play, then it will be a question for Giovanni.”

Related posts:

  1. Slovakia announce squad for Ireland and Armenia qualifiers
  2. Darron Gibson set to miss Slovakia and Russia games
  3. Slovakia Squad Watch
  4. Live Commentary: Ireland v Slovakia
  5. Slovakia v Ireland Newspaper Roundup

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