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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Nations League update: Injured Matic withdraws from Serbia squad

Nations League update: Injured Matic withdraws from Serbia squad

October 10, 2018 16:08 IST

Nemanja Matic has returned to Manchester United to complete his rehabilitation under the club's guidance

IMAGE: Nemanja Matic has returned to Manchester United to complete his rehabilitation under the club's guidance. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic has withdrawn from Serbia's squad for their UEFA Nations League matches against Montenegro and Romania due to an unspecified injury, the Premier League club said on Tuesday.

United confirmed Matic had returned to the club to complete his rehabilitation under their guidance, making him a doubt for his and manager Jose Mourinho's return to StamfordBridge to face their former club Chelsea in the league after the international break on October 20.

Matic, who joined United from Chelsea last year, has made eight club appearances this season.


The 30-year-old joins Luke Shaw in the treatment room after the left back pulled out of the England squad with an injury on Monday.

Serbia face Montenegro in Podgorica on Thursday and Romania in Bucharest three days later.

England not on revenge mission in Croatia, says Trippier

England will not be out for revenge for their World Cup semi-final defeat when they face Croatia in the Nations League on Friday, defender Kieran Trippier has said.

England enjoyed their best World Cup performance in 28 years in Russia this summer, missing out on a spot in the final after losing to the Croats after extra time.

"No, it's not revenge. Croatia were good on the day against us in the World Cup semi-final but it's another game," Trippier told Sky Sports.

"We want to go there get the win, get the points we need and then look forward to Spain."

Friday's clash will be played behind closed doors as UEFA have punished Croatia after a Nazi symbol was marked on their pitch ahead of a Euro 2016 qualifier.

England, second in Nations League Group 4 ahead of Croatia, face leaders Spain in Seville next Monday.

Netherlands coach Koeman won't rest Champions League players

Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman said he would field his strongest team against Germany in the Nations League on Saturday and would not rest players who are participating in the Champions League for Dutch clubs.

Koeman told a news conference on Tuesday that he understood the concerns of the Ajax Amsterdam and PSV Eindhoven coaches about keeping their players fresh for key Champions League games later this month, but said he would not spare anybody.

“I completely understand the position of the club coaches. I was the same for many years. (Ajax coach) Erik ten Hag, for example, asked me to watch the load of his players and we will certainly see how everyone fares this week, but I won’t be sparing anyone for the game."

That includes Ajax’s 21-year-old midfielder Frenkie de Jong, who sat on the bench for the club's last game because of a calf injury.

"It seems to me that if you are on the bench, then you are fit to play," Koeman said.

Ajax are home to Benfica on October 23 when the Champions League resumes while PSV welcome Tottenham Hotspur the next day.

Ajax have a win and a draw from their first two fixtures while PSV and Spurs are both looking to secure their first points.

The Netherlands has two teams in the Champions League group phase for the first time since 2010, but the national team are also hoping for an upturn in their fortunes after missing out on the last World Cup and the last European Championship.

Saturday’s match in Amsterdam is the second for both countries in the new Nations League and the Dutch will then play a friendly against neighbours Belgium in Brussels next Tuesday.

The Netherlands lost 2-1 at world champions France last month while Germany drew 0-0 with France at home.

"We will play to get results because these things matter and I’ve told my players so," Koeman added. 

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