Iniesta, Morata and Carvajal to miss World Cup qualifiers
MADRID (AP) — Andres Iniesta, Alvaro Morata and Dani Carvajal will miss two World Cup qualifying matches because of injuries.
The trio will miss Spain’s World Cup qualifiers against Albania on Friday and Israel on Oct. 9.
Spain coach Julen Lopetegui announced their replacements on Monday: Real Sociedad right back Alvaro Odriozola, Las Palmas attacking midfielder Jonathan Viera and Athletic Bilbao striker Aritz Aduriz.
They will join the rest of the players who are reporting for the squad’s training camp on Monday.
The Spanish soccer federation said Iniesta and Morata have muscle injuries and Carvajal has a viral infection related to his heart.
Iniesta was hurt in Barcelona’s 3-0 win over Las Palmas on Sunday and is expected to be sidelined for 10 days, while Morata was injured in Chelsea’s 1-0 home loss to Manchester City on Saturday in the Premier League.
Carvajal was ruled out of Real Madrid’s 2-0 win over Espanyol because of an infection that is affecting a membrane that encloses his heart.
Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said Carvajal’s injury was not serious, but he did not say how long the right back was expected to be sidelined.
Spain leads Group G with 22 points, three ahead of Italy. A victory in one of the last two matches could be enough to secure automatic qualification as the group winner because Spain has a much better goal difference than Italy (29 to 12).
Italy hosts Macedonia on Friday and plays at Albania three days later.