Benjamin Pavard refuses to blame Antonio Rudiger for neck stamp in France's goalless draw with Germany

Posted by On 10:16 AM

Benjamin Pavard refuses to blame Antonio Rudiger for neck stamp in France's goalless draw with Germany

Benjamin Pavard refused to blame Antonio Rudiger for stamping on his neck during France’s goalless draw against Germany on Thursday, dismissing the incident as part of football.

The two men clashed in the third minute of their Uefa Nations League opener at the Allianz Arena as Pavard slid in to prevent Rudiger crossing the ball from the left flank and, while he succeeded in snuffing out the danger, the Stuttgart defender was left with nasty stud scratches across his neck.

Replays appeared to show Rudiger drag his studs as he hurdled Pavard, but speaking after the match the 22-year-old had no desire to accuse his opponent of dirty play.

(Getty)

"It hurts a lot, but I don’t think he did it on purpose," he said. "I’ve not seen the footage again. I tackled him, took the ball and he scraped me with his studs. I’ve not looked in the mirror yet, but I’m told it’s quite impressive!

"It’s football â€" I don’t think he meant it."

Rudiger’s actions prompted many on social media to suggest he should have been sent off, and on Friday the Chelsea defender took to Twitter to express his regret over the incident.

“Sorry for @BenPavard28, it wasn't intentional,” he wrote. “I have apologized to him right after it happened and I also want to use this opportunity to wish him a speedy recovery!”

Germany created the clearer chances in the match, but could not find a way through a combination of France’s formidable defence and an impressive performance from debutant Alphonse Areola, who made several good saves deputising for World Cup-winning captain Hugo Lloris.

“We really suffered [against] a really good Germany team,” Pavard admitted. “They were vengeful after their World Cup.

“I think they had more energy than us . They returned from their holidays earlier than us. We stayed strong as a team, that’s our strength.”

France are next in Uefa Nations League action when they face Netherlands in Paris on Saturday, though it is uncertain whether or not Pavard will feature.

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Source: Google News France | Netizen 24 France

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