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Zabaleta doubtful for Latics clash

10 Oct 2009 14:01:00

Zabaleta doubtful for Latics clash

Argentina defender Pablo Zabaleta is a doubt for Manchester City's Barclays Premier League match at Wigan next weekend after he returned home early from international duty. The right-back travelled to South America despite reporting a hamstring problem after Monday's draw with Aston Villa. Zabaleta has not played for his country since the Beijing Olympics over a year ago but was named in Diego Maradona's squad for crucial World Cup qualifiers against Uruguay and Peru. However, the 24-year-old's participation was always in doubt from the moment he complained of a problem having come off after 90 minutes at Villa Park. "The Argentinian FA have checked him out, as after the game last Monday he said that he had felt something with the last kick of the game," said City boss Mark Hughes. "He'd felt a slight strain in the hamstring but he needed to travel to Argentina to get it verified. "Pablo's not played that many games, and there is always a danger that this kind of thing might happen to someone who, like Pablo, has not played as much as others. It's a disappointment for him. "He'll be back here soon and once we get him scanned hopefully it will not be as bad as feared. But as it stands you have to say that there is a real doubt that he would be available for our game next weekend."


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