West Ham United have been handed a fresh injury blow as several members of David Moyes’ squad head out on international duty this week…
One player who will now not be featuring for his national side is Vladimir Coufal, who has been ruled out of the Czech Republic’s 2022 World Cup qualifying matches against Wales and Belarus.
The Irons have confirmed that the 29-year-old right-back has returned to Rush Green for treatment after being assessed by the Czech Republic’s medical staff.
Hammers head of medical Richard Collinge told the club’s official website:
“Vladimir has a slight groin injury that has caused him some discomfort.
“Both ourselves and the Czech Republic medical team agreed that it would be beneficial for him to get some rest during this period, and we will manage his recovery carefully with a view to him being available for selection again as soon as possible.”
Coufal has been ever-present in Moyes’ side since joining from Slavia Prague in a £5m deal a year ago.
He was forced to miss last week’s Europa League group stage victory over Austrian outfit Rapid Wien but seemingly passed a late fitness test to be involved against Brentford in the Premier League on Sunday, a game in which they were defeated.
The 24-cap international looked some way off the pace throughout the game and it did seem like he was rushed back into the side, only further highlighting his importance to the Scotsman.
Indeed, as explained by Football FanCast, Coufal was hugely disappointing during the 2-1 defeat, playing the full 90 minutes perhaps still carrying the injury that ruled him out of their midweek encounter.
Last term, the Czech star started 34 league games and ranked as Moyes’ fifth-best performer (6.95), as per WhoScored ratings.
A model of consistency, the right-back topped the squad charts for tackles per game (2.1) and wasn’t far behind for interceptions (1.2 per match), key passes (1.3 per match) and assists (seven).
Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher waxed lyrical over his dependability in this side to Monday Night Football [4th May, 22:24pm], where he said:
“We talk about [Tomas] Soucek, but Coufal whether it’s right wing-back or right full-back at different times, he’s just one of those players that’s 7/10 minimum every time you watch him play.
“He’s the type of player you’d love to play with him. A manager’s dream, never injured, he’s there week in week out.”
On the above evidence, Coufal has been a major member of the starting XI for quite some time, so this latest update on his injury situation should come as cause for concern for everyone associated with West Ham, particularly Moyes as he will rue his absence should he still be out when they return in just over a weeks time.