Netherlands star Virgil van Dijk mentioned he was unhappy to study that former Liverpool teammate Sadio Mane would miss the World Cup on account of harm, even when it would increase Dutch hopes. The defender was on account of come up towards Mane when the Netherlands face Senegal of their opening Group A match on Monday however the Bayern Munich ahead is out of the event after struggling a leg harm enjoying for his membership. “I known as him the following day and clearly I needed to know the way he was,” Van Dijk mentioned at his group’s pre-match press convention in Doha.
“There have been so many rumours popping out. As a buddy I needed to know the way he was. It wasn’t one of the best information he has had and sadly he will not be capable to make this event.”
Van Dijk and Mane performed collectively at Southampton earlier than being reunited at Anfield, profitable the Premier League title and the Champions League collectively beneath Jurgen Klopp.
Mane left Liverpool earlier this yr for a contemporary begin at Bayern.
“I really feel unhappy for him,” Van Dijk added. “I understand how onerous he labored for this and he has been vital for Senegal so he’s going to be a giant miss for them.
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“However hopefully we are able to profit a bit of from that as nicely.”
Monday’s match on the Al Thumama Stadium within the Qatari capital marks the Netherlands’ return to the World Cup after they didn’t qualify for the 2018 event in Russia.
Dutch coach Louis van Gaal, who’s again in cost after taking the group to 3rd place in 2014, identified that his facet are additionally handicapped by the absence of Memphis Depay.
The Barcelona ahead, 28, who has scored 42 targets in 81 video games for his nation, together with 12 in qualifying for the Qatar World Cup, has not performed since September.
“That is the match that units the tone for the remainder of the event and Senegal are the African champions so they aren’t simply any outdated opponent,” mentioned Van Gaal.
“I feel that Mane is a rare participant. I needed him at Manchester United, when he was nonetheless at Southampton, so I’m a fan of Mane.
“He can break open a match and I might say that Senegal will actually miss him, however the identical applies to us. We are going to actually miss our prime scorer.”
(This story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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