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France forward Nkunku ruled out of FIFA World Cup

France forward Christopher Nkunku. | PHOTO: Courtesy |
  • Christopher Nkunku has been ruled out of the World Cup and will not travel with France squad
  • Nkunku was part of France squad preparing to travel to Qatar for the World Cup
  • The forward suffered an injury while in training with his France teammates injuring his knee

France winger Christopher Nkunku has been ruled out of the 2022 FIFA World Cup after the France striker suffered a knee injury in training on Tuesday with the World Champions.

The RB Leipzig forward took a knock in a challenge with Eduardo Camavinga as they contested a 50-50 ball and he had to be helped off the field.

It has now been confirmed that Nkunku will not travel to Qatar after tests revealed he had sprained his left knee.

The French Football Federation sent Nkunku’s medical file to FIFA in order for the defending champions to call up a replacement as soon as possible.

Nkunku

Christopher Nkunku suffered the injury in training with the France national team few days to the kick off of the 2022 FIFA World Cup. | PHOTO: Courtesy |

The former PSG man is expected to be replaced by either Wissam Ben Yedder, Moussa Diaby, Morgan Terrier or Randal Kolo Muani.

France head coach Didier Deschamps and the squad are due to depart for their Doha base on Wednesday.

Among players from Europe’s top five leagues – the Premier League, LaLiga, Bundesliga, Ligue 1 and Serie A – only France team-mate Kylian Mbappe has managed more combined goals and assists since the beginning of 2022 than Nkunku.

The 25-year-old has achieved a total of 48 goal involvements (37 goals and 11 assists) in the calendar year, with Mbappe leading the way on 57 (43 goals and 14 assists).

Earlier reports stated that RB Leipzig forward, who has been in outstanding form for his club, took a knock that left him in obvious pain and required team staff to help him off the field.

Nkunku suffered the blow in a challenge with Eduardo Camavinga as they contested a 50-50 ball, with head coach Didier Deschamps among those who went to his aid.

Deschamps will want Nkunku to be fit to make the trip to Qatar, with France due to depart for their Doha base on Wednesday.

Reports in France had said Nkunku would undergo tests to check he had not suffered any significant damage to his left leg, with the player said to be optimistic he would be fine but he will now miss the tournament.

Christopher  Nkunku

France winger Christopher Nkunku plays for Bundesliga side RB Leipzig, the forward will miss the 2022 FIFA World Cup with a knee injury. | PHOTO: Courtesy|

Nkunku has scored 17 goals and provided two assists in 23 games for Leipzig this season.

Among players from Europe’s top five leagues – the Premier League, LaLiga, Bundesliga, Ligue 1 and Serie A – only France team-mate Kylian Mbappe has managed more combined goals and assists since the beginning of 2022 than Nkunku.

Karim Benzema and Raphael Varane, working their way back from injuries, played a limited part in Tuesday’s training session.

Les Bleus begin their World Cup Group D campaign against Australia on November 22, before tackling Denmark and Tunisia on November 26 and 30 respectively.

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