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Unfit Nainggolan defends Roma friendly appearance

Radja Nainggolan has responded to claims he has skipped international duty with Belgium, insisting he is not fit enough to feature in their World Cup qualifiers.

While Roberto Martinez’s men beat Bosnia and Herzegovina 4-0 in Brussels on Friday, Roma midfielder Nainggolan was recovering after playing in a friendly against his club’s reserve side.

Having pulled out of the Belgium squad with injury, the 28-year-old’s appearance was criticised by some in his home country, leading him to defend himself.

“I read some b******t about how I’ve played in a training match against the Roma reserves,” he posted on his Twitter account.

“I’m trying to get physically OK. Is a friendly match against the youth to get fit now as hard or tough to play as an official contest?

“I’m not fit enough to play an official match.”

Nainggolan has featured in six of Roma’s seven Serie A games so far this season, and recently signed a new contract extension to keep him at the club until 2020.

Sat 8 Oct, 2016
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