Löw kicks Kuranyi out of national team for going off in a huff

AFP/DPA/The Local
AFP/DPA/The Local - [email protected] • 12 Oct, 2008 Updated Sun 12 Oct 2008 12:47 CEST
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German striker Kevin Kuranyi was thrown out of the national team on Sunday after walking out of the stadium halfway through Saturday’s match against Russia which he was watching from the stands after missing out on selection.

The 26-year-old striker who usually plays for Schalke 04, was unreachable for the rest of the night, failing to turn up for the team bus after the match, sparking a full search of the stadium in Dortmund, nor did he appear at the team’s hotel in Düsseldorf.

Two friends were sent to the hotel on Saturday night to collect his things, after several attempts to call his mobile phone failed to make contact.

National trainer Joachim Löw said on Sunday he had thrown him out of the team. “I cannot accept something like the way that Kevin reacted yesterday, and will not be nominating him for the national team in the future.”

Kuranyi had watched the first half of the match with several other not selected players and then asked permission during the break to change into normal clothes so he could meet friends. He was not seen again.

His disappearance infuriated Löw, who said on Sunday such conduct needed explaining. “I can understand his disappointment, but the reaction on Saturday evening is not acceptable or understandable. Here at the national team we have 20 top people, and we trainers keep on having to make difficult decisions.

“We are amazed ourselves. It surprised us all. Despite several attempts, neither [team manager] Oliver Bierhoff nor I could reach him on the phone.”

Löw said that Kuranyi had already expressed his disappointment at not being picked for the squad against Russia during a team meeting when the line-up was announced.

Kuranyi’s advisor told television reporters on Sunday, “He decided what he for himself found to be right, which was to say I’m going home.”

He admitted that Kuranyi’s departure from the stadium could have been handled better, but said, “But the person Kevin Kuranyi playes a role too, and he decided to go that way.”

Kuranyi was left out of last year’s national team for the World Cup, a decision by then trainer Jürgen Klinsmann and his then assistant Löw, which surprised many commentators.

But Kuranyi again donned the national shirt in February 2007 and played for his country in last summer’s European Championship.



AFP/DPA/The Local 2008/10/12 12:47

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