It wouldn’t be an international break without some sort of injury concern, or two or three, and so, before a ball is even kicked in anger or friendliness, Álvaro Morata gets us started for this last two-week FIFA nonsense for 2017.
According to multiple reports out of Spain — Sport Witness have a good round-up of the various outlets — the Chelsea striker missed Wednesday’s training with the national team due to an unspecified toenail issue that limited him to staying inside the facility and pedaling around on an exercise bike. It’s understood that the issue is not serious (like, say, turf toe would be) and it’s not expected to prevent him from playing for his country after missing out due to injury in October, but without knowing exactly what the issue is, it’s tough to feel entirely comfortable with the situation, regardless of how minor the “petty annoyance” might be.
Morata has just finally recovered from the hamstring injury that has been weakening his play up front for Chelsea; the last thing we need is another annoying hangnail. Spain take on Costa Rica on Saturday and Russia on Tuesday in a pair of friendlies. Morata is expected to start at least the first game.