The best XI of players who are missing Euro 2016 would probably go and win the tournament
The European Championships will showcase some of the continent’s greatest talent… but here Alan Tyers picks an XI, and seven subs, who sadly won’t be gracing the tournament with their presence this summer. We reckon this side could give any team in France a run for their money.
Tim Krul (GK)
Written into World Cup legend when he came on as a 120th minute sub to win Holland a penalty shootout against Costa Rica in Brazil but he, like every other Dutch player, will be watching from the comfort of a lovely pancake shop this summer after the Clockwork Orange failed to qualify.
Dani Carvajal (RB)
Real Madrid’s right back got himself a muscular injury to his right leg in the Champions League Final and will miss out. Arsenal's Hector Bellerin is the man who takes his place.
Vincent Kompany (CB)
Manchester City’s big man has had injury worries all season and a recent calf problem has ruled him out. Marc Wilmots is also missing defenders Nicolas Lombaerts and Dedryck Boyata.
Kurt Zouma (CB)
Zouma’s pace and strength will be missed by the hosts, who have problems at centre half. Also missing is Raphaël Varane of Real Madrid, who was unlucky enough to get hurt in training prior to the Champions League Final.
Luke Shaw (LB)
The Manchester United man was looking like Ashely Cole’s long-term successor as a classy, reliable full-back but his awful September 2015 double leg-break has kept him out of action ever since. Has returned to training with everyone’s good wishes; England will have to make do with the honest but inferior Danny Rose or Ryan Bertrand.
Santi Cazorla (RM)
Two-footed Arsenal magician has been fighting back hard from injury but has been unable to probe that he deserves a chance in what you have to say is quite a competitive midfield. Juan Mata of Manchester United is also out of favour.
Marco Verratti (CM)
“I suffered a great deal when learning I’d have to miss the tournament due to injury, but football is like that,” said the PSG midfield pocket battleship of his inability to come back from a sports hernia in time.
Andrea Pirlo (CM)
Devastating news for all who enjoy the beautiful side of the beautiful game, the Juventus central midfield artist has been omitted from Antonio Conte’s squad. Naturally, the great man handled it graciously, saying: “He is the coach and it's only right he makes his decisions” and leaving it to others to wail “Why? Why, Conte? Why?”
Arjen Robben (LM)
A sad day for sportsmanship: popularity’s Arjen misses out, as does Daley Blind and indeed every other Dutch person you can think of. It’s a massive setback for Game Of Thrones favourite Carice van Houten, who plays topless priestess Melisandre.
Karim Benzema (ST)
When you are omitted from the FRENCH squad because the country’s FA president thinks that your inclusion might upset harmony, you know that you are a pretty tough guy to get along with. Les Bleus have been synonymous with infighting, but France Football Federation grand fromage Noel Le Graet felt that the Real Madrid striker had "done something really stupid" over the Mathieu Valbuena affair and he was left out of the hosts’ squad.
Diego Costa (ST)
Having won the World Cup without a striker, Vicente del Bosque did not feel moved to change his plans to accommodate the out-of-form Chelsea irritant. Referees no doubt greeted Diego’s squad snubbage with relief.
Independent News Service