International call-ups: Bale passes health test for Wales, Costa left out of Spain
Vicente del Bosque isn’t going to admit that Jose Mourinho’s concerns regarding Diego Costa were valid, but the Spanish manager and striker will not be reunited for Spain’s next round of Euro 2016 qualifiers.
The Spain boss has played up the country over club discussion by saying he doesn’t particularly care how using Costa affects his availability for Chelsea. But he hasn’t called up Costa for next week’s games despite acknowledging the forward could play this weekend against Liverpool.
“Our doctors have been in contact with Chelsea’s doctors and they have agreed it would be best for him to rest,” del Bosque said, adding that the player’s “pain in his groin doesn’t mean he won’t play on Saturday.”
Mourinho then used his Friday press conference to say that Costa is available for the Blues.
New to the Spanish squad are 22-year-old Juventus forward Alvaro Morata and 27-year-old Napoli attacker Jose Callejon.
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And as USMNT fans wait for news of Jurgen Klinsmann’s call-ups for Colombia and Ireland, plenty of other roster notes have been released. Some highlights:
-- Greece will not only omit Giorgio Samaras from its team for matches against the Faroe Islands and Serbia, but Fulham property Kostas Mitroglou (right) has also been dropped.
-- Netherlands boss Guus Hiddink is looking for something different as the Dutch hope to avoid another poor outing when Latvia visits for a Euro qualifier. Jetro Willems (PSV Eindhoven) and Ricardo Van Rhijn (Ajax) have been called up for the Dutch defense, as the Netherlands side is third in Group A, six points back of Iceland and the Czech Republic.
-- Gareth Bale will play at least an hour for Wales against Belgium after returning to the Real Madrid squad for a substitute appearance against Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday. He hadn’t played since for his club since picking up an injury while playing for his country in October.
-- Jonas Hector is the new name for Joachim Loew‘s Germany squad. The Cologne defender will be in the mix for a Euro qualifier against Gibraltar and a friendly versus Spain.