The national coach Djamel Belmadi hosted a press conference this morning at the CTN in Sidi Moussa. He answered various questions from the media present. He had the opportunity to clarify and dot the i’s on several topics.
The first question posed to the national coach is obviously his choice concerning the list of players selected for the next internship which will begin today. An internship that is part of the preparation for the first two days of qualification for CAN-2023, respectively against Uganda and Tanzania. “All the players selected I followed them for a long time, especially the new ones. If they’re there, it’s simply because they’re the best right now. Regarding the new ones, I think it’s the perfect time to inject new blood into the selection, ”he said straight away.
He evokes the discarded players, indicating: “The doors of the national team are not closed to discarded players. Their dismissal is not final insofar as none of them has announced their international retirement. They will always remain selectable.
He defends Mahrez
The long-awaited question is that relating to the absence of Riyadh Mahrez. The latter is the subject of several criticisms after having requested exemption from the next internship. He made the pretext of the injury from which he suffers. But the national coach defended his player.
Indeed, the national coach will say: “Concerning the absence of Mahrez, we received a detailed medical report from Manchester City which attests that the player is injured. It is not my place to give more details. I tell you that I cannot summon a player to undergo medical examinations. I’ve never done it since I became Algeria coach and I never will. For me, it’s a no-brainer.”
“To tell you a secret, Riyadh played the semi-final of the European Champions League against Real Madrid while injured. And if you remember, he skipped the two games that followed him in the English league. Now whether he’s gone on vacation or not, it’s not up to us, ”defended the captain of the Greens.
It must be said that Mahrez’s request to be exempted from the national team training camp on the pretext of the injury caused the great dismay of Algerian fans. His vacation photos in Marrakech with his little family also lit up the web.