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Aston Villa’s Charles N’Zgobia injured during vacation in Miami

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Quite a big blow reached English Premier League side Aston Villa on Friday afternoon, and probably one they weren’t expecting to hear either.

French winger Charlez N’Zogbia has injured his Achilles tendon whilst on holiday in Miami.

Yeah, you read that right.

I’m sure the details will come out in the coming weeks as to exactly how the injury occurred, but it seems as if N’Zogbia has pushed himself too hard on vacation and has paid the price.

Here is a message to all professional soccer players: Don’t train too hard during your time off! Or something like that…

The 27-year-old attacker was said to be keeping fit in Florida ahead of the start of preseason with Villa, but he injured his Achilles and has gone under the knife in the US. Villa have sent the club’s head of sports and exercise medicine, Roddy MacDonald, to Miami to assist N’Zogbia’s recovered.

Roddy has landed on his feet with that assignment. Anyway, in a statement on Villa’s website, manager Paul Lambert had this to say.

“The priority is to ensure that Charles receives the very best care and he has done and will continue to do so throughout his recovery period,” Lambert said. “It’s a blow for Charles, obviously, but he’ll get his head down and get himself fit again and he’ll have plenty of support in doing so.”

But while we are discussing slightly obscure and bizarre injuries, which ones spring to mind?

Rio Ferdinand once strained a tendon in his knee after relaxing too much and putting his feet up on the table while watching TV. Spanish goalkeeper Santiago Canizares dropped a bottle of aftershave on his foot and missed the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea.

While current Montreal Impact star Alessandro Nesta once ruptured his left thumb after playing video games on the Playstaion all night long and was out for a month after requiring surgery. And finally, well I could go on all day here but we will end it here, former Barnsley star Darren Barnard slipped in a puddle of his dog’s urine on the kitchen floor and was out for over five months after tearing his knee ligaments.

Have you got any others I’ve missed out? Do share in the comments below. I love these bizarre injury tales.

Anyhow, get well soon, Charles.

Klopp’s Liverpool squad enthusiasm: “Everything is there”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 09:  Jurgen Klopp is unveiled as the new manager of Liverpool FC during a press conference at Anfield on October 9, 2015 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
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It isn’t Dortmund, but that’s a good thing for Liverpool.

Our own Joe Prince-Wright was on the scene for Jurgen Klopp’s unveiling as the latest Reds manager, and the 48-year-old German had a lot to say.

Perhaps most poignant for Liverpool fans are Klopp’s words on the talent he inherits from Brendan Rodgers. Sure there are quips that will hit the headlines, but how about Klopp’s assertion that success shouldn’t take nearly as long as his dramatic work at BVB.

From JPW on Merseyside:

“We did in Dortmund what we had to do, to improve the players, to work for a common idea of play. That is what we did and its the same thing we want to do here. They are not the same players of course,” Klopp told NBC Sports ProSoccerTalk. “These players from Liverpool are better, more experienced in some ways and younger in other cases. Everything is okay, I am here. I am not here only because LFC was calling. I believe in the potential of this team. Four or five strikers you can work with when they are not injured, midfielders is really good, defenders experienced and very young, goalkeeper is really good. Everything is there.”

Everything. A powerful word and one that doesn’t get lost in translation. Liverpool has a batch of world class talent, and Klopp’s is anxious to organize it in world class fashion. Strap in, Anfield.

CONCACAF Cup preview: Ultimate guide to USMNT vs Mexico

Beasley, and other US veterans, have been asked to take the young guys under their wing.
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So here we go: the biggest rivalry in U.S. Soccer, the one that sends fans racing for the stadia for a glimpse of history.

It’s the U.S. and Mexico for the right to go to the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia, and it will play out at the Rose Bowl on Saturday night.

National pride is on the line, and national jobs may rightly be in jeopardy. Let’s swing through our coverage, and what’s at stake in just over 24 hours time.

The Battles

Who is the key to Saturday’s match? Is it Michael Bradley? Fabian Johnson? Andres Guardado? Will Klinsmann opt for players with Liga MX experience, stay Euro Heavy, or appease the domestic set? Read more here.

The XI

So how will Klinsmann line ’em up? JPW has his preference, some options, and a prediction of what the manager will do.

The history

What are the chances this one finds its way into the upper echelon of matches in the Mexico/U.S. rivalry? This is the company it could join.

Klinsmann’s future

The folks in the anti-Klinsmann brigade seethe with pure detestation of the USMNT boss. Any quote from him is self-serving and dishonest, any success accidental. Beat Germany or the Netherlands in friendlies on the road? Coincidental and Unimportant. Lose a friendly to Brazil? The worst thing ever.

[ MORE: The case for firing Klinsmann after a loss ]

So this match, being meaningful and testing his unbeaten mark vs Mexico, is going to be a clarion call for U.S. Soccer fans. Barring a cataclysmic loss in horrific blowout fashion, he won’t be canned. But a win will be validation for his supporters while a loss would cue a genuine hot seat. And for his detractors, already foaming at the mouth from the words of icon Landon Donovan? Kablammo.