Czechs suffer Smicer setback
Czech Republic midfielder Vladimir Smicer is expected to play no part in the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany after suffering a thigh injury in his right leg.
The Bordeaux midfielder, who was part of Liverpool's 2005 UEFA Champions League-winning side, initially hurt his right calf during training ahead of a friendly match against Turkey in February.
Smicer sustained the latest injury while he was engaged in a separate practice session away from the rest of the team. Czech Republic coach Karel Bruckner sat down with the player and the medical staff to discuss the problem and it seems certain he will not play in the finals.
"He was never fully fit," Czech media officer Lukas Tucek told fifaworldcup.com. "Mr Bruckner knew that he was not 100 per cent fit but all the medical treatment and tests gave us hope that Mr Smicer would be fit for the World Cup."