World Cup 2022 LIVE: Maddison NOT in England training, Qatar vs Ecuador build-up, Karim Benzema OUT of tournament | The Sun

World Cup 2022 LIVE: Maddison NOT in England training, Qatar vs Ecuador build-up, Karim Benzema OUT of tournament | The Sun

11/20/2022

ENGLAND have been dealt a blow before their World Cup opener against Iran as James Maddison has missed training once again.

The Leicester midfielder is still feeling the effects of an injury he picked up against West Ham last week.

France are also dealing with injury problems as Karim Benzema has been ruled out of the World Cup with injury.

The Ballon d'Or winner is having to forfeit from the squad after picking up an injury in training.

The World Cup gets underway today as hosts Qatar take on Ecuador in the opening game.

Elsewhere, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have come together with Louis Vitton and released a joint Instagram post.

The pair are pictured together over a chess board ahead of the tournament that gets underway on Sunday.

World Cup 2022 sign up offer: Get £40 in FREE BETS when you stake £10 at Sky Bet

Stay tuned with all the latest ahead of the tournament…

  • Jake Sanders

    Booze ban hack exposed

    SunSport has exposed a World Cup cover up by supporters.

    This is a photo doing the rounds revealing an ingenious way to beat the stadium booze ban which has caused so much controversy.

  • Jake Sanders

    Fans are ready

    The excitement is building and supporters of both Qatar and Ecuador are beginning to arrive for the opening game of the tournament.

    We're just over two hours away from the 22nd edition of football's greatest show and the first ever in the Middle East.

    It kicks off at 7pm local time, which is 4pm in England.

    Credit: AFP
  • Jake Sanders

    Maddison misses training again

    Things aren’t looking good for James Maddison.

    Once again he’s not part of England training and this time he hasn’t even taken part in the huddle before the work starts.

    But the Foxes schemer can’t be replaced because the deadline has passed (24hours before the first game) and in any case it was an existing knee problem that he felt in the game at West Ham.

  • Jake Sanders

    Chaos ahead of opener

    The World Cup isn't off to the best start.

    Qatar against Ecuador is less than three hours away, but there's severe traffic outside the Al Bayt Stadium.

    As you can below, this was around 3pm local time, which is around four hours before the game gets underway.

  • Jake Sanders

    Captain America

    Leeds midfielder Tyler Adams has been named as USA's captain for the World Cup.

    The armband has been shared around in the lead up to the tournament, but Adams has been given the honour in Qatar.

    Adams has captained the side on eight occasions previously, but not since the draw with Mexico back in March.

  • Jake Sanders

    Living crisis reaches Qatar

    The cost of living crisis has reached the desert sands of Qatar.

    'Gold' petrol is the elite brand sold at the pumps out here in Oil land where apparently there is enough crude beneath our feet for the next 402 years.

    But in a shock move the price of Gold on the forecourt has rocketed from 2 to 2.1 Rials per litre in the past few days.

    That is the equivalent of going from 46p to 49p.

  • Jake Sanders

    France won't replace Benzema

    Didier Deschamps has confirmed that he will not be calling up a replacement striker for injured superstar Karim Benzema.

    The 34-year-old world player of the year has returned home after suffering a thigh strain in training yesterday and will play no part in the competition.

    Deschamps said: "Of course it’s a big blow. Karim had done everything to be fit, he was in a training session and with an almost innocuous action he hurt his left thigh.

    “It wasn’t even the same leg as the hamstring injury he’s had before. So it wasn’t a relapse, it was a new injury.  It wasn’t even on a sprint or a kick. 

    "It’s never good when an injury like this happens. It doesn’t make you smile. We’d already lost Christopher Nkunku and everyone was very sad.

    "But this is Karim, and unfortunately the examinations have confirmed that the tear is too big in relation to the deadlines facing us.

    "So he has already left the squad and I have decided that I will not replace him because we have enough attacking players."

  • Jake Sanders

    Fifa not providing team-sheets

    Any World Cup fans wanting Qatar 2022 team-sheets will be left disappointed – because Fifa will NOT be printing any out.

    The initial team list for Brazil’s 1998 Final side against France – which did not include ronaldo – became a prized possession for collectors.

    But in a break from tradition, Fifa will send ALL match information only by computer link.

    Fifa’s Hans hultman said: "We’re trying to be sustainable and all the information can be downloaded."

    Martin Lipton in Doha

  • Jake Sanders

    Wales train ahead of USA clash

    Gareth Bale and co are training this morning for the final time before their meeting with USA on Monday night.

    Joe Allen aside,Rob Page has a full bill of health ahead of the opener.

    The Swansea City midfielder is in attendance, but isn't fit enough to take part.

  • Jake Sanders

    Kehrer to put West Ham woes to one side

    Thilo Kehrer refuses to let Premier League struggles with West Ham dent his dreams of winning the World Cup with Germany, writes Andy Dillon.

    The robust defender has played more minutes for Die Mannschaft than anyone else in the squad since Hansi Flick took over as national team boss last year.

    Kehrer joined West Ham for £10.5 million in the summer and came to Qatar with The Hammers just a point off the relegation zone.

    He insists it was still the ‘perfect’ move for him and looks certain to be a main part of Germany’s campaign to win a fifth World title.

    "West Ham have been underperforming and we haven’t got the number of points we would have wished for. We haven’t got what we deserved.

    "Nevertheless I come here brimming with confidence because I have my rhythm. While the results haven’t been there we have played reasonable football.

    "It has not dented my self confidence in the least with the national team and I come here ready to contend with any of my team-mates and with any opponent.

    "I am playing in the best league in the world and feel fit for the World Cup. One of the biggest reasons for signing for West Ham was to play in the Premier League and I have played in 13 Premier League games.

    "I am very well prepared for whatever task is thrown at me.  It was the perfect move for me."

  • Jake Sanders

    Wales' World Cup debut is coming

    All the focus today is on Qatar against Ecuador and then England vs Iran tomorrow.

    But Wales' first World Cup match for 64 years is also on the horizon.

    The Dragons are in action on Monday at 7pm and will take a giant step towards the knockout stages with victory, especially with the Three Lions up next.

    Everything you need to know about the clash is right here.

  • Jake Sanders

    White didn't watch Colombia shoot-out win

    Ben White has revealed that England's 2018 World Cup penalty shoot-out victory over Colombia wasn't on the TV in his house.

    When asked about his World Cup memories, the Arsenal man said: "There are not many that stick out.

    "Obviously the disappointments and I remember Eric Dier’s penalty against Colombia and the feeling.

    "But the game wouldn’t have been on in the house.

    "I didn’t grow up watching football in my house as it wasn’t on. It’s never been in my life or my mum and dad’s."

  • Jake Sanders

    Lewandowski hoping to achieve dream

    Robert Lewandowski says scoring at a World Cup would be a dream come true.

    The Barcelona striker played at 2018 but failed to find the net in three appearances as Poland finish bottom.

    He told BBC Radio 5 Live: "I think about the last World Cup for sure.

    "To score at a World Cup would be a huge dream and I'm going to do everything for this dream. I hope in this World Cup it will happen."

  • Jake Sanders

    Sterling set to start against Iran

    Raheem Sterling is expected to start England's World Cup opener against Iran, according to the Telegraph.

    The Chelsea winger has struggled following his move from Manchester City, scoring three goals in 12 Premier League outings.

    Regardless, Sterling, who started all seven games at the Euros, looks set to get the nod tomorrow.

  • Jake Sanders

    Heartbreak for Benzema

    Karim Benzema has been ruled out of the World Cup.

    The 2022 Ballon d'Or winner suffered a muscle tear in training and will now miss the tournament.

    The French football federation said: "Karim Benzema is out of the World Cup.

    "After hurting the quadriceps on his left thigh, the Real Madrid striker is forced to give up on taking part in the World Cup."

    "He went for an MRI scan in a hospital in Doha, which unfortunately confirmed a tear."

    According to o L’Equipe, Anthony Martial, Wissam Ben Yedder and Moussa Diaby are the frontrunners to replace him in the squad.

  • Jake Sanders

    Confirmed officials for England

    The officials have been confirmed for England's clash with Iran on Monday.

    The game will be refereed by Brazilian Raphael Claus, while hisassistants will be countrymen Rodrigo Figueiredo and Danilo Simon.

    The VAR will be Leodan Gonzalez of Uruguay.

  • Jake Sanders

    Opener fast appoaching

    We're now less than eight hours away from the opening game of the World Cup between Qatar and Ecuador.

    The game in Al Khor kicks off at 7pm local time, which is 4pm English.

    Everything you need to know is HERE, including details about the opening ceremony.

    Today's clash also marks the start of 17 consecutive days of World Cup football.

  • Kealan Hughes

    Good morning footy fans!

    Reports are coming late tonight that Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema is out of the World Cup.

    The France striker, 34, was earlier reported to be missing out on his country’s first game against Australia.

    However, now it’s been said that he will miss the whole tournament with a tear to his left thigh, according to Le Parisien.

    French journalist Julien Laurens has also tweeted: “Karim Benzema is out of the whole World Cup!!!!”

    Argentina are worried over the fitness of star man Lionel Messi after he was spotted training alone just days before their first World Cup game.

    Lionel Scaloni’s side trained in Qatar together but Messi was notably not involved sparking injury fears amongst fans.

    The 35-year-old appeared for practice later than the rest of his teammates and took part in a one-on-one session with a coach rather than joining in with the full squad.

    Marca report that Messi did “solo exercises” and did not touch the ball in his session but he will be okay for the team’s opening game.

    Argentine journalist Gustavo Yarroch rushed to calm down worried supporters saying that the PSG star has a small calf issue and that he is reducing his workload to ensure he is fit to play.

    Former American goalkeeper Brad Friedal has claimed England does not scare US – but Wales do.

    The ex-Tottenham keeper wrote in the Mail: “A lot of people think the US should beat Wales but this Welsh team is good. They have some excellent players and I’ve seen up close how special their star man, Gareth Bale, is.

    “A lot of people think the US should beat Wales but this Welsh team is good. They have some excellent players and I’ve seen up close how special their star man, Gareth Bale, is. Watching him in the MLS Cup final showed me how the fire still burns inside.”

    Qatar’s beer ban could cost Fifa a staggering £40MILLION with Budweiser prepared to play hard-ball.

    The American beer company is one of the World Cup’s official sponsors and were set to provide the booze in grounds and fan zones in Qatar.

    However, footy fans attending the tournament will have a dry World Cup after authorities performed a stunning U-turn on alcohol this week.

    It had previously been promised that beer and other drinks would be available at all eight World Cup venues.

    However, Fifa chiefs bowed to pressure from the Qatari authorities and confirmed they will not be selling alcohol at any stadiums.

    It’s bad news for official beer sponsor Budweiser, who are now looking for compensation following the shock U-turn.

    They currently have a deal worth around £65m with Fifa for this World Cup.

    Budweiser also has a deal for the 2026 World Cup worth up to £95m.
    Gareth Southgate does not deserve the berating he got for a dismal Nations League campaign this year, Eric Dier says.

    The defender told a press conference : “It’s crazy talk and perceptions change so quickly.

    “You’ve got to remember what England were doing before.

    “He has taken England to a World Cup semi and the final of a Euros and we’re talking small margins that change the outcome of those results.

    “The criticism is crazy after a small run of results given how England performed at those tournaments — and he was at the forefront of that.”

  • Jon Boon

    Lucky escape for Phillips

    Kalvin Phillips dropped a clanger that almost wrecked his Qatar hopes.

    The Manchester City star, 26, recovered from shoulder surgery just in time to be named in England’s World Cup squad.

    Then he risked it all by letting a 5kg weight fall on his foot ahead of City’s clash with Brentford last week!

    The midfielder, who has cut up his left flip-flop to stop it rubbing on the wound, said: “It’s a good story to be honest!

    “So before that game, being the professional I am, I went to the gym before the match and was just doing loads of Achilles work on the leg press.

    “I’d gone to pull a weight off the rack and there must have been one stuck behind it and I pulled it off and it landed on my foot and cut it all.

    “I stood for about ten seconds and thought, ‘Oh my God — what was that?’

    “If it wasn’t a 5kg plate, if it had been heavier, I think it would have been a lot worse.

    “Imagine that, that is what you get for being professional!

    “But it’s not too bad, the blisters from training hurt more.”

  • Jon Boon

    Dier sticks up for Southgate

    Gareth Southgate does not deserve the berating he got for a dismal Nations League campaign this year, Eric Dier says.

    The defender told a press conference : “It’s crazy talk and perceptions change so quickly.

    “You’ve got to remember what England were doing before.

    “He has taken England to a World Cup semi and the final of a Euros and we’re talking small margins that change the outcome of those results.

    “The criticism is crazy after a small run of results given how England performed at those tournaments — and he was at the forefront of that.”

  • Jon Boon

    Defiant Kane

    Harry Kane today defied a last-ditch bid by World Cup chiefs to stop him wearing a rainbow “One Love” armband.

    His team-mate Eric Dier also became the first England player to speak out on Qatar controversies, calling stadium worker deaths “terrible”.

    Fifa’s rattled chief Gianni Infantino had earlier launched into a bizarre defence of the World Cup, which kicks off tomorrow afternoon after a succession of cock-ups.

    Three Lions captain Kane will sport its anti-discrimination armband when England play Iran tomorrow after the FA rejected a late Fifa alternative yesterday.

    In its latest startling move, Fifa chiefs unveiled its own “approved” armbands including one emblazoned with: “NoDiscrimination.”

    But the FA hit back: “We respect the Fifa armband but are committed to the One Love armband and intend to wear it.”

  • Jon Boon

    Benzema out of the World Cup

    Reports are coming late tonight that Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema is out of the World Cup.

    The France striker, 34, was earlier reported to be missing out on his country's first game against Australia.

    However, now it's been said that he will miss the whole tournament with a tear to his left thigh, according to Le Parisien.

    French journalist Julien Laurens has also tweeted: "Karim Benzema is out of the whole World Cup!!!!"

  • Jon Boon

    Southgate to resign?

    Sam Allardyce reckons Gareth Southgate will quit as England manager even if he wins the World Cup.

    Ex-Bolton and West Ham chief Allardyce said: “If Southgate doesn’t win the World Cup, he will step down from his role as England manager.

    “Even if he does win it, he will walk too as he can leave on a high.

    “It’d be a great way to bow out.”

  • Jon Boon

    Forest keen on Keane

    Everton want to off-load England defender Michael Keane — and hope Nottingham Forest make a big offer.

    Keane is out of favour under Frank Lampard and the Toffees plan to cash in on the 29-year-old ex-Burnley centre-back.

    Forest have money to spend and want to boost their survival battle.

    But Steve Cooper will explore other options first and Everton may have to settle for a fee around £15million at best.

  • Jon Boon

    Sancho wipes his Insta

    Man Utd fans have been left baffled after Jadon Sancho wiped out his Instagram account.

    The 22-year-old winger moved to Old Trafford last year after a stunning few years in Germany at Borussia Dortmund.

    That had led to him becoming a regular in Gareth Southgate’s England squad.

    However, a drop in form for his club has seen him lose his Three Lions place which has resulted in him missing out on the World Cup.

    Whether or not that is the reason that Sancho has decided to have an Instagram blackout remains unknown.

    But fans were quick to spot today that he had deleted all of his previous posts from the account.

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