Belgium midfielder Radja Nainggolan suffers calf injury

Roma midfielder central to Belgium coach Marc Wilmots’ Euro Championships plans

 Radja Nainggolan is Belgium’s latest injury concern ahead of Euro 2016. Photograph: Claudio Villa/Getty Images

Radja Nainggolan is Belgium’s latest injury concern ahead of Euro 2016. Photograph: Claudio Villa/Getty Images

 

Belgium’s preparations for next month’s European Championship have suffered a blow with the news that midfielder Radja Nainggolan will be sidelined for at least two weeks due to a small tear in his calf muscle.

The 28-year-old Roma midfielder is central to Belgium coach Marc Wilmots’ plans and the layoff will keep him out until their final friendly against Norway in Brussels on June 5th.

Belgium, who are preparing in Lausanne this week, have a friendly against Switzerland scheduled for Saturday in Geneva and a warm-up against Finland in Brussels on June 1.

Their first match of Euro 2016 is against Italy in Lyon on June 13th. Belgium’s other Group E opponents are Ireland and Sweden.

“It’s not that great,” Wilmots said. “Normally he would be out for two weeks, but Radja is recovering very quickly.”

Wilmots also called up Lauren Ciman of Montreal Impact on Sunday as cover in defence.

Captain Vincent Kompany has been ruled out of the tournament, as had Bjorn Engels of Club Bruges but he has since been given a lifeline and could return to training next week.

Engels’ team mate, Thomas Meunier, is also a doubt after going off in the last match of the season.

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