The Asian Age

Messi to miss Cup re­match


Madrid, Sept. 1: Ar­gentina cap­tain Lionel Messi will miss his side’s friendly against world cham­pi­ons Ger­many on Wed­nes­day due to a groin strain, his club side Barcelona con­firmed on Mon­day.

The match of­fers Ar­gentina an im­me­di­ate chance for re­venge for their ag­o­nis­ing 1- 0 ex­tra­time de­feat to Ger­many in the World Cup fi­nal last month. Messi suf­fered the in­jury in Barca’s 1- 0 win away to Vil­lar­real on Sun­day and will also miss a char­ity match in Rome on Mon­day.

“Leo Messi will re­main in Barcelona as a pre­cau­tion due to a strain in his right ad­duc­tor,” Barca said in a state­ment on their web­site.

Mean­while, Ger­many’s Me­sut Ozil is also un­likely to play in the friendly.

Arse­nal mid­fielder Ozil did not join team mates on Mon­day in Dues­sel­dorf for the first time since their World Cup vic­tory 50 days ago and will fly in on Tues­day after nurs­ing a mi­nor in­jury.

“It looks very tough for Wed­nes­day for Me­sut,” Bier­hoff said. “Hope­fully, he will be fit for Sun­day.” Ar­jen Robben, Klaas Jan Hun­te­laar and Rafael van der Vaart have with­drawn from the Nether­lands squad for in­ter­na­tional matches against Italy and the Czech Repub­lic, the Dutch foot­ball as­so­ci­a­tion said on Mon­day.

Robben has an an­kle in­jury, Hun­te­laar is sick and Van der Vaart a mus­cle strain. All three play­ers are Bun­desliga- based.

At­tack­ing mid­fielder Lu­ciano Nars­ingh of PSV Eind­hoven has been called up as cover as the squad num­bers have been cut from 25 to 23.

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