Belgium hope for better KompanySaturday, 12 May 2007
by Berend Scholtenfrom Diest
Vincent Kompany could be in line for a surprise return to international football after being included in Belgium's 30-man provisional party for the forthcoming UEFA European Under-21 Championship.
The Hamburger SV defender is a regular for the senior national team, but has been out of action since picking up an achilles injury in November. The 21-year-old is nearing fitness now, however, and Belgium U21 coach Jean-François De Sart has listed him in a strong squad that also includes Maarten Martens, Moussa Dembélé, Thomas Vermaelen, Steven Defour and Anthony Vanden Borre.
'Month to go'
The quintet are all full internationals, but it is Kompany's name that is attracting most attention and the Belgium coaching staff believe the tournament in the Netherlands would be a good opportunity for him to return to action. "At the moment he cannot play in the Bundesliga, but there is still a month to go," said De Sart's assistant, Jean-François Remy. "Hamburg have already given their permission."
Goalkeepers: Logan Bailly (KRC Genk), Frank Boeckx (K. Sint-Truidense VV), Michaël Cordier (FC Molenbeek Brussels Strombeek), Glenn Verbauwhede (Club Brugge KV).
Defenders: Laurent Ciman (R. Charleroi SC), Steve Colpaert (FC Molenbeek Brussels Strombeek), Sepp De Roover (Sparta Rotterdam), Guillaume Gillet (KAA Gent), Vincent Kompany (Hamburger SV), Nicolas Lombaerts (KAA Gent), Landry Mulemo (K. Sint-Truidense VV), Sébastien Pocognoli (KRC Genk), Thomas Vermaelen (AFC Ajax), Jan Vertonghen (RKC Waalwijk).
Midfielders: Jonathan Blondel (Club Brugge KV), Steven Defour (R. Standard de Liège), Marouane Fellaini (R. Standard de Liège), Faris Haroun (KRC Genk), Ibrahim Maaroufi (FC Internazionale Milano), Maarten Martens (AZ Alkmaar), Kilian Overmeire (KSC Lokeren OV), Anthony Vanden Borre (RSC Anderlecht), Axel Witsel (R. Standard de Liège).
Forwards: Tom De Sutter (KSV Cercle Brugge), Moussa Dembélé (AZ Alkmaar), Tom De Mul (AFC Ajax), Stijn De Smet (KSV Cercle Brugge), Jonathan Legear (RSC Anderlecht), Kevin Mirallas (LOSC Lille Métropole), Jeanvion Yulu-Matondo (Club Brugge KV).
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