Sunday, March 22, 2009

Berbatov out of Ireland v Bulgaria qualifier

Bulgaria captain Dimitar Berbatov will miss Bulgaria's Group 8 world cup qualifier against Ireland on the 28th of March after suffering an ankle knock. The injury came during Manchester United clash with Fulham on Saturday afternoon.

"Dimitar's got a good crack on his ankle. There's some swelling there. We'll have a look in the morning. Bulgaria will have to miss Dimitar Berbatov," Manchester United Assistant Manager Mike Phelan told the BBC.

The Bularian football team doctor has ruled out any chance of Berbatov joining the squad for the Ireland clash.

“In no way can this happen. The injury will stop him from playing football for at least two weeks. Most probably this is about his old ankle problems, which have aggravated despite the measures that have been taken,” Mihail Ilev told the Bulgarian National TV channel.

The Bulgarians' new manager, Stanimir Stoilov, is facing an uphill battle as he will also be without Manchester City winger Martin Petrov, who is still recovering from a surgery.

Stoilov is yet to announce Berbatov's replacement.

Bulgaria are third in Group Eight with three points from three matches. They will be desperate to avoid defeat in Dublin as a defeat would leave them 10 points behind Ireland, and make a massive dent in their hopes of reaching the finals in South Africa.

Bulgaria are up against Ireland on 28 March at Croke Park and Cyprus four days later.

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