• AFP-Jiji


Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl claims it is “nonsense” for Japan forward Takumi Minamino to be asked to travel for international duty during the coronavirus pandemic.

Minamino, on loan from Liverpool, is set to join up with the Japan squad for next week’s friendly against South Korea in Yokohama.

The fixture had already irked Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho after Son Heung-min was named in South Korea’s squad despite limping off with a hamstring injury against Arsenal on Sunday.

Now Hasenhuttl has added his voice to the complaints about the return of international matches while the virus remains a global problem.

“I expect Minamino’s trip to happen, although there are some big journeys and long travels there, which I do not like to see, but it is how it is, and a few more players are going also,” Hasenhuttl said.

“To be honest, when you see how difficult traveling is at the moment, what loops they have to jump through when coming back to be available for us again, this is for me a little bit nonsense.

“We are not allowed to leave the country for any reason, and then they are flying all over the world in such a pandemic, I cannot see a reason why you should do this.

“But it is like it is, and we have to accept it. I can only accept it if then the players are after available for us and our game, this is hopefully the fact.”

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