World Sports News in Brief

Salah's absence playing on Egypt's mind, says coach

Monday, 2018-06-04 05:28:35
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Liverpool's Mohamed Salah reacts after sustaining an injury during the Champions League final against Real Madrid, Kiev, Ukraine, May 26, 2018. (Photo: Reuters)
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Mohamed Salah’s absence is affecting Egypt’s World Cup preparations, coach Hector Cuper said after the team played out a goalless draw with Colombia at the start of the weekend.

The draw means Egypt have now gone five games without victory, stretching back to last October. Salah is still in doubt for Egypt’s opening match in Group A on June 15 against Uruguay in Ekaterinburg after suffering a shoulder injury in the Champions League final for Liverpool late last month. Salah will also not be in the line-up against Belgium in Brussels on Wednesday when the Egyptians conclude their preparations before heading to Russia.

* Sampdoria midfielder Gaston Ramirez was among three players cut from Uruguay's final 23-man World Cup squad on Saturday. Seattle Sounders playmaker Nicolas Lodeiro and Deportivo La Coruna teenager Federico Valverde were also left out by coach Oscar Tabarez, the Uruguayan Football Association said.

* Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner may have a reputation as a "bad boy" but the 30-year-old showed signs of maturity in the way he accepted the decision of coach Age Hareide to leave him out of the World Cup squad due to injury. Bendtner left the field with tears in his eyes after sustaining a groin injury while playing for his Norwegian club side Rosenborg a week ago, and the Danes must now do without his erratic talent and off-beat sense of humour.

* Manchester United are expected to sign Brazilian midfielder Fred in the coming days, with the player to undergo a medical at the Premier League club on Monday, according to Brazilian media reports. Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred featured as an 82nd-minute substitute in Brazil's 2-0 friendly win over Croatia at Anfield on Sunday and Globo's sports website said he would then take the short trip to Manchester to undergo a medical prior to a 55 million euro (US$47.13 million) transfer.

* France centre back Samuel Umtiti has extended his contract with Barcelona by five years until 2023, the La Liga club said on Sunday. Umtiti, 24, joined Barcelona in 2016 from Olympique Lyonnais for 25 million euros (21.84 million pounds) and has one won one La Liga title and two Spanish Cups with the Catalan club.

* Experienced fullback Elderson Echiejile, whose career has been languishing in the Belgian second division, and Simeon Nwankwo, who won a first cap last week, were both included as Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr on Sunday finalised his 23-man squad for the World Cup. Five players - John Obi Mikel, Victor Moses, Ahmed Musa, Kenneth Omeruo, Ogenyi Onazi - were also in the squad for the 2014 World Cup.

Reuters, Xinhua