Could it beryllium soccer’s mentation of the Flu Game?
Dutch players were fixed the time disconnected connected Thursday — 2 days earlier they look the U.S. successful the knockout signifier of the World Cup — arsenic the Netherlands squad deals with a “worrying” influenza outbreak.
“I gave them a time of rest,” manager Louis van Gaal said Friday. “With this group, they pass that to me. I perceive to my players.”
The squad returned to signifier Friday.
The “flu symptoms” — believed to beryllium caused by precocious air-conditioning astatine the team’s basal — caused van Gaal to skip La Oranje’s accustomed 11-on-11 grooming match, successful which the reserves enactment arsenic a scout squad of sorts, a important departure from Dutch protocols heading into a match.
The manager refused to elaborate connected his team’s condition, but added that, “if it goes astir successful the group, it is worrying.”
Netherlands, winners of 18 straight, volition look a USMNT that needed a 1-0 triumph implicit Iran successful its last radical signifier crippled to beforehand to the circular of 16. The subordinate liable for the goal, 24-year-old Christian Pulisic, was cleared to play aft sustaining a pelvic bruise connected the play.
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“I volition bash everything successful my powerfulness to enactment with this aesculapian squad and marque definite that I tin play,” helium said.
Pulisic was hospitalized aft the injury, but was capable to articulation his teammates arsenic they returned to their edifice for a raucous greeting.
“At this stage, it’s spell time,” U.S. manager Gregg Berhalter said of his star. “If you tin propulsion done it, you do. So I’m definite he’ll person that mindset.”