Mbappe out of France squad with calf injury

By Sports Desk September 02, 2021

France striker Kylian Mbappe has been granted permission to return to Paris Saint-Germain after suffering a right calf injury.  

Mbappe will miss the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Ukraine on Saturday and Finland on Tuesday as a result. 

The French Football Federation confirmed that no replacement would be called up.  

Mbappe was taken off in the closing stages of France’s 1-1 World Cup qualifying draw with Bosnia-Herzegovina on Wednesday. 

Despite the draw, Les Bleus sit top of Group D, four points clear of their next opponents Ukraine with four games remaining.  

The 22-year-old will hope to recover in time to return to league action for his club against Clermont on September 11. 

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  • Kris Doolan buzzing as Stuart Bannigan boosts Partick Thistle before play-off Kris Doolan buzzing as Stuart Bannigan boosts Partick Thistle before play-off

    Partick Thistle manager Kris Doolan has welcomed the return of Stuart Bannigan to add even more experience to his confident side ahead of their play-off final against Ross County.

    The 30-year-old midfielder suffered a calf strain in the first half of Thistle’s quarter-final first-leg win over Queen’s Park, while Cammy Smith is also set to return after missing the semi-final games against Ayr with a groin issue.

    The Jags have scored 16 goals in the cinch Premiership play-offs so far and Doolan has backed his players to handle the occasion ahead of Thursday’s first leg at Firhill.

    “Stuart is back training now which is brilliant,” he said. “A guy like Stuart Bannigan coming back in lifts a team even more, as if they needed anything else to lift them. Even just to see him in training again… the boys got a wee spring in their step.

    “He is such a big player for us and it’s great to see him back there leading within a group. I see a lot of leaders in the team and Stuart is one of them.

    “You need that type of experience at this stage and it rubs off on the younger ones. They learn how to carry themselves, not to get carried away, not to get flustered and to enjoy it, embrace it.

    “The play-off games are notoriously frantic and you have to understand how to handle that, but we have a lot of seasoned professionals, guys who have been through these type of games before, have played in the Premiership and top end of the Championship.

    “We have good players who can handle the pressure. That’s shown in the four games we have had, we have not only scraped through the games, we have come flying through the games.”

    Thistle have had a week to prepare for both legs against Ayr and will go into Thursday’s game with two more days of rest than County.

    “I feel as if we are in the best shape we can be in,” Doolan said. “I think the boys have learned a lot about dealing with the play-offs, we have had four games under that pressure and scored 16 goals.

    “To handle that type of pressure in the play-offs is a big feather in the cap of those players because I have been in the flipside of it. I have been in the Premiership side coming into the play-offs off the back of a season where you are used to losing games, and it becomes really difficult to turn a team round who have such good momentum.

    “The four games we have had have been a great learning curve but also made us get stronger.

    “If you are winning games, you don’t feel tired, you don’t feel sluggish. Our boys are desperate to play and they are full of energy.

    “The confidence we have, we don’t come into these games fearful. We will be understanding of how difficult it is, we will give respect to Ross County because they are the Premiership side, but we play to win in every game and I see that mentality day in, day out.”

  • Old Road snaps St. Peters six-game win streak in SKNFA Premier League; Village, Conaree and Bath all secure wins Old Road snaps St. Peters six-game win streak in SKNFA Premier League; Village, Conaree and Bath all secure wins

    St. Peters FC’s six-game winning streak was broken on Friday when MFCR Old Road United Jets overcame a deficit to defeat them 4-1 in Verchilds in round two action of the SKNFA Premier League.

    Tyquan Terrel put St. Peters ahead in the 28th min and they led for the rest of the first half. The second half, however, was all Old Road.

    Tiquanny Williams started the comeback with a penalty in the 52nd minute and followed that up with a second goal in the 20 minutes later to give Old Road the lead before Kaylon Liburd scored a third in the 75th minute. Captain Nequan Browne completed the goalscoring in stoppage time.

    Old Road coach, Alexis Morris, credited his team for their fight and resolve in the second half to claim a resounding victory.

    “At the end of the first (half), we should not have been 1-0 down with (Tiquanny) getting in front of the goal. On any day he would have been scoring those goals. Nonetheless, we kept working and we dug deep and we found a way back, like I asked them to…I know we were going to get one back within the first 10 minutes and that set up the game for us,” Morris said. 

    Coach Austin Huggins of St. Peters said the team was unable to refocus after having a goal they scored early in the match, ruled out for offside.

    “First of all, let me congratulate OR for scoring four goals. I think that the game was a good game. We had opportunities to score as early as couple of seconds after the game started, but the goal was disallowed and I think that the referee made some very difficult decisions that worked hard against us, broke our momentum, and put us in a very unfavorable position,” Huggins said.  

    In the day’s earlier match, league leaders Flow 4G Cayon Rockets comfortably defeated Jones Group Sandy Point FC 3-0, also in Verchilds.

    Raheem Davis scored for Cayon in the 4th minute, Kavon Phillip scored a Sandy Point own goal in the 10th minute and Devontay Carty scored Cayon’s third in the 64th minute.

    Coach Al Edwards of Cayon said despite the win, his team needs to do a better job in finishing their crosses.

    “I like the fact that we got down the wings, which is one of our strengths. I like the fact we are putting in the crosses, but I don’t like the fact that we are not finishing those crosses,” he said. 

    Shaquan Pemberton a player with Sandy Point bemoaned his team’s loss at the bottom of the table.

    “We started the game wrong and we didn’t commit to the plays and (Cayon) capitalized on it,” Pemberton said.

    Fast Cash Saddlers FC suffered a 4-1 loss to Rams Village Superstars on Saturday at the St. Paul’s playing field.

    Glenville Gumbs gave Saddlers a rare early lead in the 18th minute but that was soon erased when Village won a penalty, which was converted by G’vaune Amory in the 32nd minute.

    In the second half, it was more Village, again earning another penalty, this time converted by Joseph Wilkes in the 60th min. Kimaree Rogers then got two breakaway runs, scoring both in the 73rd and in stoppage time.

    Assistant Coach for Village, Vaughn Patrick, said they had a slow start, but they encouraged the players to keep pushing.

    “We had a slow start; the fellows went out a little flat-footed. We went behind, we encouraged them, talked to them. We put in the fighting spirit. We got one goal; one led to two, two led to three, three led to four. We just keep on the pressure on them and play a little faster. We were too slow in the beginning,” Patrick said.

    Coach of Saddlers Samuel Phipps said some tough calls by the referees, affected their ability to get a positive result. He said they will have to work hard now to get some wins under their belt.

    “We played most of the difficult teams in the first half of the second round and then we intend to go back again and work hard and try to get some wins under our belt,” Phipps said.  

    In the next match-up, S L Horfords St. Paul’s United and Newtown United drew 1-1. Deneilson Thomas of Newtown gave the East Basseterre outfit the lead before April’s player of the month, Keithroy Freeman, equalized moments later heading in a corner.

    Coach Anthony “Nets” Isaac of Newtown was pleased with the performance but said more work must be done defensively.

    “I am about 80 percent satisfied, counting the last game we played against St. Paul’s. I think we did much better defensively, even though we gave up that soft goal,” Isaac said.

    Manager of St. Paul’s, Austin Lewis, said the result is better than a loss.

    “I appreciate the point,” he said.  

    Sunday’s action saw SOL IAS Conaree FC and Bath United earning crucial wins at Warner Park.

    Conaree edged Hobson Enterprises Garden Hotspurs 2-1. Errol O’Loughlin scored both of Conaree’s goals from the penalty spot in the 38th and 71st minutes, while the lone goal from Spurs came from Steve Archibald in the 42nd min.

    Coach of Conaree Al Richards said it was an important win for them.

    “It was a dog fight. I told my team that it was a derby…this win was needed tonight in order to get up back in the table in the top six. The guys came out and performed, fight to the end and I must say congrats to my team,” Richards said.

    Hotspurs coach, Stephen Brown, said the performance of his team was good but it was unfortunate they were unable to get the win.

    “The performance of the guys wasn’t bad at all. They really put in a shift. We had some unfortunate calls that went against us that I felt decided the game but outside of that, I am content with the performance of the team,” Brown said. 

    In Sunday’s earlier match, Bath United trounced Security Forces FC 4-0. Goals were scored by Kenaicy Dorsett, Jalden Meyers, Omarion Bartlette, and Jahmal Lewis in the 19h, 1st minute of first-half stoppage time, 62nd and 81st minutes respectively.

  • Andy Farrell names four uncapped players in 42-man Ireland training squad Andy Farrell names four uncapped players in 42-man Ireland training squad

    Ireland head coach Andy Farrell has named four uncapped players in a 42-man training squad ahead of the Rugby World Cup.

    Munster wing Calvin Nash, Leinster backs Ciaran Frawley and Jamie Osborne and Ulster hooker Tom Stewart have all been included.

    Leinster back Jordan Larmour and Munster fly-half Joey Carbery miss out, though, for a first block of training that starts on June 18.

    Ireland have World Cup warm-up games against Italy, England and Samoa in August, with their tournament opener coming against Romania in Bordeaux on September 9.

    A warm-weather training camp in Portugal is also planned for August before Farrell confirms his 33-player World Cup squad.

    “It is exciting to announce our extended training squad for the first phase of Rugby World Cup preparations, and we are looking forward to assembling in Dublin next month to hit the ground running as a group,” Farrell told irishrugby.ie.

    “It is pleasing to see that selection has been as tough as ever, as real quality players have initially been unfortunate to have missed out.

    “I am sure that camp will be competitive enough as we grow minds and bodies and look to push on with our game from last season.

    “In the meantime, it’s important that we freshen up for a busy and exciting summer ahead so we are ready to get to work on June 18.”

    Training squad: Backs – B Aki (Connacht), C Blade (Connacht), R Byrne (Leinster), C Casey (Munster), J Crowley (Munster), K Earls (Munster), C Frawley (Leinster), J Gibson-Park (Leinster), M Hansen (Connacht), R Henshaw (Leinster), H Keenan (Leinster), J Lowe (Leinster), S McCloskey (Ulster), C Murray (Munster), C Nash (Munster), J O’Brien (Leinster), J Osborne (Leinster), G Ringrose (Leinster), J Sexton (Leinster), J Stockdale (Ulster).

    Forwards – R Baird (Leinster), F Bealham (Connacht), T Beirne (Munster), J Conan (Leinster), G Coombes (Munster), C Doris (Leinster), T Furlong (Leinster), C Healy (Leinster), I Henderson (Ulster), R Herring (Ulster), R Kelleher (Leinster), D Kilcoyne (Munster), J McCarthy (Leinster), P O’Mahony (Munster), T O’Toole (Ulster), A Porter (Leinster), C Prendergast (Connacht), J Ryan (Leinster), D Sheehan (Leinster), T Stewart (Ulster), K Treadwell (Ulster), J van der Flier (Leinster).

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