Nantes manager explains why he dropped a player for fasting in Ramadan
Nantes coach Antoine Kombouare explains why he dropped Jaouen Hadjem out of the squad to face Reims on Saturday because the player refused to break his fast.
Nantes boss Antoine Kombouare explained his controversial decision to leave Jaouen Hadjem out of the squad to face Reims on Saturday because the player refused to break his fast.
The 59-year-old French manager came under criticism for his decision to leave the 20-year-old left-back out of the squad; he has now given reasons for his decision.
The choice, according to Kombouare, was consistent with a long-standing rule he has followed throughout his coaching career rather than being a novel one.
He revealed that it was a policy of his to leave players who are fasting out of matchday squads.
He said that he respected Hadjem's religious beliefs and that the decision to leave him out of the squad was not a sanction but instead a guideline.
He also revealed that he had no issues with players fasting during midweek training, but believes footballers should not fast and play football together.
"It’s his choice, and I respect it. This is not a sanction, but I have a framework," he told L'Equipe
"During the week, there are no problems with fasting players. I’m ready to support them if needed. We know it’s not an easy time. But on game day, you should not fast. And those who fast are not in the squad. I don’t want them to pick up an injury.“
The left-back reportedly agreed to break his fast for away games, but like the match against Lens, he refuses to do so for home games.
However, according to the coach, other Muslim players in the squad had agreed to break their fast for the match against Reims.
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