Chelsea winger Hakim Ziyech has taken to Instagram to fire back at his national team manager after allegations of feigning injury.
Ziyech is arguably the star player in a strong Morocco squad which also includes the likes of Achraf Hakimi and Youssef En-Nesyri.
However, the Chelsea winger was not called up by manager Vahid Halilhodzic for the most recent international break.
Instead of facing Sudan and Guinea in World Cup qualifying, Ziyech has been forced to watch along from home.
As quoted by Optus Sport, Halilhodzic blamed Ziyech’s omission on his own actions last time he played with his country:
“Ziyech was not disciplined during the last two games. He didn’t look like a player competing with the national team for World Cup qualifiers.”
“For the first time in my career, I saw a player in the national team who doesn’t want to train and pretends to be injured. Although tests have shown that he can play.”
“I will not tolerate this behavior as long as I am the national coach of Morocco.”
Those are some pretty strong and serious allegations for Halilhodzic to be making, especially against a player as talented as Ziyech.
If Morocco want to be successful in World Cup qualifying and at AFCON early next year, they will want Ziyech in the side.
Though, his relationship with manager Halilhodzic may now be beyond repair, especially after Ziyech appeared to fire back at the accusations via his Instagram story.
— Nizaar Kinsella (@NizaarKinsella) September 2, 2021
Halilhodzic is not the first manager to take an authoritarian approach to coaching, but you need to choose your battles wisely.
Cutting out arguably Morocco’s best player from the squad is not the right way to achieve success or keep the other players in the team onside.
Ziyech’s response is certainly not going to help matters, either…