Neville defends Abdennour omission

Gary Neville has praised Aymen Abdennour for graciously accepting his omission from the Valencia squad for Sunday’s visit of Rayo Vallecano in La Liga.

Abdennour had been a regular performer for Valencia since his transfer from Monaco last summer but will not play a part against Rayo, despite being available for selection, yet Neville maintains the centre-back is still an “important” member of his squad.

“I’ve been fair to all the players. Everyone’s starting from scratch,” the Coach said at a Press conference.

“[Abdennour] won’t play [on Sunday], but he is still an important player for us and respects the decision.

“There’s been no problems with anyone and I have respect for all the lads. They’ve been great.

“I’ve talked to him. We have 22 players in training and only play 11 can play, so it’s not easy. You have to make decisions.

“In our three cup games, we’ve scored nine goals and kept three clean sheets, and they both have to be seen in the League, although we’re working hard to transfer our cup form into the League.

“The fans have been wonderful. They’ve supported the team, been fair to us and are entitled to be angry.

“The fans require a very high standard and so do the fans. We feel the emotions they’re experiencing.

“I would never tell the fans how to behave. They’re within their rights [to behave how they wish].

“I expect a tough match with a blistering start, so we have to be very alert, but this is always the case.

“I hope we play well and show concentration, especially in terms of our intensity. It’s a very competitive League.

“[On Jesus Garcia Pitarch’s return as sporting director], it helps that there’s a structure.

“Pitarch spoke with the President and will support us in many areas thanks to his experience.

“[Andre Gomes] wanted to play against Real [Madrid], but we remain cautious.

“The doctors have said that he’s free to play, and I’m happy to have him back.”

Tags Aymen Abdennour Gary Neville