Eduardo Camavinga pulls out of France squad, Khephren Thuram called up

Real Madrid’s Eduardo Camavinga pulls out of the France squad for November’s Euro 2024 qualifiers with a knee injury and is replaced by Nice midfielder Khephren Thuram.

Real Madrid midfielder Eduardo Camavinga has pulled out of the France squad for November’s Euro 2024 qualifiers with Gibraltar and Greece due to a knee injury.

The 21-year-old – who has featured in all 17 games for Real Madrid so far this season – was initially named in Didier Deschamps‘s squad for their final two Group B fixtures as Les Bleus seek to confirm a place in Pot 1 of next year’s draw.

Camavinga completed the full 90 minutes of Los Blancos’ most recent La Liga fixture – a 5-1 thrashing of Valencia – but according to L’Equipe, he sustained a knee injury during Wednesday’s training session with the national team.

The former Rennes man apparently came off worse in a collision with Paris Saint-Germain’s Ousmane Dembele and was unable to complete the practice session, gingerly limping off the pitch to receive treatment.

Camavinga is said to have played down the severity of his problem to the club’s medical team, but after being sent for further assessment on Thursday morning, the decision has been taken to withdraw him from the squad.

Real Madrid's Eduardo Camavinga picture on March 19, 2023© Reuters

In his place, Deschamps has recalled 22-year-old Nice midfielder Khephren Thuram, who made his debut for Les Bleus against the Republic of Ireland in March but had not been included since.

“Eduardo Camavinga, who had to cut short his training session on Wednesday, went for exams in the evening, accompanied by Dr. Franck Le Gall, the French team doctor,” the French Football Federation said in a statement.

“The Real Madrid midfielder suffers from a sprained right knee. He was released today to his club. Didier Deschamps decided to call Khéphren Thuram as reinforcement.

“The Nice midfielder will return to the group in Nice on Friday, on the eve of the match against Gibraltar at the Allianz Riviera (Saturday, 8:45 p.m., live on TF1). He will wear number 6.”

It remains to be seen if Camavinga’s problem will affect his participation in Real’s La Liga clash with Cadiz on November 26, which comes three days before Carlo Ancelotti‘s men host Napoli in the Champions League.

Nice midfielder Khephren Thuram pictured in August 2023© Reuters

The 21-year-old is now the second player to withdraw from the France squad this month, as Liverpool centre-back Ibrahima Konate pulled out with a hamstring problem and was replaced by Chelsea’s Axel Disasi.

Deschamps is also deprived of Camavinga’s Real Madrid teammate Aurelien Tchouameni due to his foot injury, although he still has Adrien Rabiot, Youssouf Fofana, Boubacar Kamara and the uncapped Warren Zaire-Emery to choose from in midfield.

France – who are already guaranteed to finish top of Group B – host Gibraltar at the Allianz Riviera in their penultimate qualifying fixture on Saturday before travelling to Athens to face Greece next Tuesday.

Les Bleus are one of seven teams battling for the final three spots in Pot 1 of the group-stage draw, which they will guarantee with maximum points in their final two fixtures.

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