Ahad, 3 Jun 2012

The big-name stars snubbed by their countries for Euro 2012

The biggest names in the game who have been snubbed by their coaches. These are players omitted for technical reasons only, not because of injury issues, and internationals who had been in contention for a call-up by their country over the last two years.


Despite being a favourite of Russia coach Dick Advocaat, Bilyaletdinov was stunned when he was left out of the provisional squad altogether. The 27-year-old midfielder had made the move back to Russia with Spartak Moscow in January 2012 after finding first-team football at Everton hard to come by. He started for his new club's three successive big games in the Russian Premier League - against Rubin Kazan, Anzhi Makhachkala and CSKA Moscow - but a metatarsal bone fracture in March hampered his progress. He made a return to action late in the season but his form failed to convince Advocaat.


Carvalho made the sensational decision to retire from international football in September 2011 after a fallout with coach Paulo Bento, who had reportedly snubbed the veteran centre-back when selecting his starting XI for the Euro 2012 qualifier against Cyprus. The Real Madrid defender walked out on the squad and brought the curtains down on his Portugal career. He was also slapped with a one-year ban by the Portuguese FA, a suspension president Gilberto Madail later noted could be shortened should Carvalho come out of international retirement. But with Bento vowing never to call up the veteran centre-back as long as he was in charge, there will be no swansong tournament for the 34-year-old.


Not for the first time, Italy's preparations for a major international championship have been rocked by a match-fixing scandal, and first-choice Azzurri left-back Criscito was forced to sacrifice Euro 2012 in a bid to clear his name. The Zenit defender had made Italy's provisional 32-man squad but on the day when coach Cesare Prandelli was scheduled to announce his final 23, Criscito was paid a visit by police in the team's training camp for his alleged involvement. Prandelli explained that he just could not take the 25-year-old to Poland and Ukraine because "he would have been under pressure which no human can bear", and that "he could have been summoned by a prosecutor at any moment before a match".


When Gourcuff first burst onto the scene, he was touted as the man who would fill the gaping hole left by Zinedine Zidane in the France team. But ever since his ill-fated move to AC Milan in 2006, things have gone downhill for the attacking midfielder. Even a return to French football, first with Bordeaux and then Lyon, failed to galvanise his form. He was still utilised sporadically by Laurent Blanc and played three of France's Euro 2012 qualifiers, scoring three times and providing one assist. The 25-year-old made the provisional list and was given a last chance to convince his coach in Sunday's friendly against Iceland, but despite playing 75 minutes he didn't impress enough.


The Manchester United centre-back had put his recent injury woes behind him after making 30 Premier League appearances this past season, the most games he has played since 2007-08. Newly installed England manager Roy Hodgson even praised the 33-year-old for his endurance, but ultimately had to omit Ferdinand "purely on other footballing reasons". Those reasons, of course, had to do with his conflict with John Terry, who is embroiled in a racism row with Rio's brother Anton. There was simply no way the two stalwart defenders could be in England's Euro 2012 squad without disrupting the harmony in the dressing room.


Soldado was the highest-scoring Spaniard in La Liga in the 2011-12 season with 17 league goals for Valencia. He even broke his scoring duck in the national team in February, netting a second-half hat-trick against Venezuela. His consistency with Los Che coupled with David Villa's injury absence and Fernando Torres' uncertain form made him a favourite to join 22 others in Poland and Ukraine. But Spain coach Vicente del Bosque, who has never been a fan of the ex-Real Madrid striker, eventually opted for Alvaro Negredo and Pedro to fill the attacking spots in his squad.


The promising 22-year-old defender, who can play in the centre or at left-back, was enjoying a breakthrough season with Paris Saint-Germain in the first half of the 2011-12 campaign. He was handed the captain's armband by then-coach Antoine Kombouare and was starting to make his mark with the French national team. But things took a dramatic turn in the new year when Carlo Ancelotti was installed as the new boss at PSG. Sakho's form began to decline and he was consequently benched and stripped of the captaincy. Making only two substitutes appearances for his club since April, he never had a chance of making Laurent Blanc's Euro squad.


Before the emergence of Mesut Ozil, Thomas Muller, Mario Gotze and Toni Kroos, Germany boasted their own Lionel Messi in the form of Marin. But the Chelsea-bound attacking midfielder was upstaged at the 2010 World Cup by the likes of Ozil and Muller, and has since been out of the spotlight as his country continually produced one promising midfield talent after another. Roman Abramovich was convinced enough to spend €7.5 million to bring him to Stamford Bridge, but Joachim Low wasn't as he overlooked the youngster for his final 23.

source: http://www.goal.com/en-gb/news/3284/euro-2012/2012/05/30/3136324/ferdinand-criscito-marin-the-big-name-stars-snubbed-by-their

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