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‘Not worthy of a captain’ – Arsenal icon takes a swipe at Mbappe ahead of Spain vs France

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Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Several Real Madrid stars will be in action today, as France takes on Spain in the UEFA Euro 2024 semi-final.

Indeed, Ferland Mendy, Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga, and Kylian Mbappe are set to take on Dani Carvajal and former Madrid players Nacho and Joselu.

Despite an incredibly impressive campaign with PSG, Mbappe has yet to fire on all cylinders in the Euro thus far. This is largely because of an injury he sustained on his nose, which has compelled him to take refuge with a mask.

While Mbappe is expected to retain his place in the lineup, former Arsenal, Barcelona, and France midfielder Emmanuel Petit does not believe Mbappe justifies a starting role and has criticized his captaincy.

Emmanuel Petit castigates Mbappe

Indeed, Petit has deemed Mbappe unfit for captaincy due to his perceived lack of initiative. His physical condition, affected by a painful broken nose, is also a concern.

Mbappe has been below his best at the Euros. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)

In fact, the Arsenal icon also suggests that his selection against Spain hinges solely on the stature of the opponent; otherwise, he might find himself relegated to the bench.

“So far, Kylian Mbappe is not worthy of a captain. He does not take enough responsibilities. He is not in good physical shape because his broken nose hurts,” the former midfielder stated, as quoted by L’Equipe.

He will play only because the opponent is called Spain. Otherwise, he would be on the bench,” he added.

So far, Mbappe has only scored once in the competition and that was from the penalty spot. Since being struck with a nose injury, he has struggled to make a notable impact.

Nonetheless, Mbappe has shown a knack for turning up on big occasions and also has a solid track record against Spain, having defeated them in the Nations League final in 2021.

As such, he would be vying to emulate his past success and recover his form at this crucial juncture.

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Real Madrid News

Just in: Real Madrid’s defensive target picks up fresh injury

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Photo by Marco Rosi - SS Lazio/Getty Images

Real Madrid are in active negotiations with LOSC Lille for the transfer of Leny Yoro. After weeks of impasse, the club appear to have made some ground in the race to sign the Frenchman.

However, should the Yoro deal fall through in the coming weeks, Real Madrid have identified Lazio’s Mario Gila as the ideal alternative.

Formerly of RM Castilla, Gila currently plies his trade for Lazio and has emerged as a key defensive lynchpin for the Italian outfit, impressing onlookers with his technique and discipline.

Mario Gila picks up fresh injury

However, in a major development, it appears Mario Gila has picked up a fresh injury during training, reports Diario AS.

In the pre-season camp at Auronzo di Cadore, Gila appears to have fractured his left foot and could be out for several weeks.

Fresh setback for Mario Gila (Photo by Marco Rosi – SS Lazio/Getty Images)

Lazio confirmed the defender’s injury, stating, “Mario Gila underwent clinical and instrumental examinations which revealed a fracture of the phalanx of the big toe of his left foot, suffered during training.”

Gila has started taking the appropriate treatment and the extent of his injury will be known soon. However, as things stand, the defender could be out for at least the next few weeks.

What does this mean for Real Madrid?

Mario Gila’s fresh injury setback is sure to dwindle any hopes of a potential return to Real Madrid this summer.

In any case, Gila’s chances of returning to Santiago Bernabeu were slim given that Real Madrid have finally made some ground in the deal to sign top defensive target Leny Yoro.

Los Blancos, though, would have liked having someone like Gila available as an alternative, especially with LOSC Lille still demanding a fortune for the Frenchman.

Unfortunately, that might not be an option anymore, no thanks to Gila’s injury. The club, though, will keep a close eye on the Spaniard’s injury situation, knowing he could return to fitness before the end of the summer break.

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