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Kyle Walker in doubt for World Cup after groin surgery

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MANCHESTER, England (AP) – England defender Kyle Walker has doubts about his World Cup qualification this year after undergoing groin surgery this week.

The Manchester City player was injured in Sunday’s 6-3 draw against Manchester United. He was taken off the field in the 41st minute.

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“As players, we need to understand that injuries are an integral part of the game we love.” Walker tweeted over a photograph of himself in a hospital bed. “My surgery on Tuesday went well and I can now focus on rehab and getting back to full fitness. I will support my teammates every day as much as I can.”

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The City said in a statement Thursday that the operation was “successful.”

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Walker, 32, has been a solid England international but manager Gareth Southgate is now looking forward to seeing if the defender can recover in time to play in Qatar.

After beating Copenhagen 5-0 in the Champions League, city manager Josep Guardiola said Walker was out for an extended period.

“It’s something abdominal and he’ll be gone for a while. I can’t say anything more,” Guardiola said. “Kyle will be away for a while. We need to talk to the doctors. I hope he can (come back for the World Championship) like Calvin (Phillips).

“I know how important the World Cup is for the players, but to be honest, I don’t know it now.”

Walker was a key figure in England’s path to the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and the final of last year’s European Championship.

Southgate has plenty of defensive options in Rhys James, Kieran Trippier and Trent Alexander-Arnold, but losing Walker would be a major blow to his World Cup preparations.

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AP World Cup coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/world-cup and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports.

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James Robson on https://twitter.com/jamesalanrobson




Source: sports.yahoo.com

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