William Saliba will miss training for the 2024 European Championship in France due to a suspected injury

French defender William Saliba

Image credits: Getty Images

France’s preparations for their next Euro 2024 match were marred by injury concerns as William Saliba trained separately on Wednesday due to muscle soreness.

This development adds to the team’s injury problems following its narrow 1-0 win over Austria in the opening match of the European Championship last Monday.

The win against Austria was overshadowed by a major setback: captain Kylian Mbappé left the match with a broken nose. Although the star striker does not require surgery, his participation in France’s upcoming Group D match against the Netherlands on Friday remains in doubt.

The 25-year-old Mbappe is expected to wear a protective mask for the rest of the tournament and he resumed light training away from the main squad on Wednesday.

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France’s injury list extends beyond Mbappé. According to L’EquipeWilliam Saliba and Dayot Upamecano, the first-choice centre-back, missed the group training as they were both reportedly suffering from muscle pain.

Arsenal defender William Saliba

Arsenal defender William Saliba Arsenal defender William Saliba (Image credit: Getty Images)

Saliba, despite his individual training, has been working with left back Theo Hernandez separately, although the reason for Hernandez’s absence from the group training has not been revealed.


Saliba, who was initially not expected to start in the European Championship, impressed in the Premier League last season. In a surprise move, coach Didier Deschamps chose the 23-year-old over Liverpool’s Ibrahima Konate for the match against Austria, where Saliba put in a solid performance. However, this recent setback could force Deschamps to adjust his line-up for the crucial match against the Netherlands.

Reflecting on his unexpected call-up and starting role, Saliba expressed his willingness and confidence: “I didn’t really expect it, but when I was called up for the European Championship, you know you have to be ready for the team. I played the last friendly match and kept a clean sheet and now I have more confidence than the previous matches.

“The national team jersey is heavier than the club jersey; we have a whole country behind us. The competition is fierce. Fortunately we have a lot of good central defenders. Usually it is Upamecano and Konate who start and set the bar high. So I know that when I start, I shouldn’t do less than that. We pull each other up; we are all friends.”

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