Italy coach Giampiero Ventura has criticised Manchester United over the club’s “bizarre” refusal to release Matteo Darmian for international duty.
Darmian helped United beat Ajax in the Europa League final on Wednesday and Ventura revealed United have blocked the full-back from joining up with his country.
Italy face San Marino and Uruguay in international friendlies on May 31 and June 7 respectively ahead of a World Cup qualifier against Liechtenstein on June 11.
Ventura named an experimental young squad for the fixtures due to a number of players, including Mattia De Sciglio, Alessandro Florenzi, Emerson Palmieri and Davide Zappacosta, being unavailable through injury and hit out at United over Darmian.
“I’d also add Darmian, he doesn’t have permission from United to come to us until June 5,” Ventura told reporters on Tuesday.
— Matteo Darmian (@DarmianOfficial) May 24, 2017
“A bizarre choice, as he’s been stopped since the Europa League final, and I think we’ve lost him for the Uruguay game too. A bizarre choice.
“We’re not going to cry though, we’ve lost many players over the months but locally we have a lot of youngsters thanks to the training camps.
“[Andrea] Conti, [Danilo] D’Ambrosio and [Leonardo] Spinazzola will be important for us in the upcoming matches.”
— Italy (@azzurri) May 27, 2017
With defenders Alessio Romagnoli and Daniele Rugani carrying injuries, Ventura is hoping the Juventus trio of Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini come through Saturday’s Champions League final against Real Madrid safely.
“It seems that Barzagli, Bonucci and Chiellini will all play on Saturday and I’ve spoken to all three of them,” Ventura added.
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