Football: 102 days... and counting until the World Cup finals begin in France

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The Independent Online
CHRIS SUTTON is by no means the only footballer in Europe with an over- inflated ego. The Anderlecht midfielder Enzo Scifo said this week that he would not play international football again after being left out of Belgium's squad for a friendly against the United States.

"The news has deeply disappointed me. I never again want to play under [the Belgium coach Georges] Leekens," the 32-year-old Scifo said. He added that Leekens was showing "a lack of respect".

Scifo, capped 79 times, made his debut for the Belgian national side in 1984 and played in the past three World Cup finals. He has also played for Internazionale, Bordeaux, Auxerre, Torino and Monaco.

Leekens said last weekend that he wanted to experiment in the friendlies against the States on Wednesday, which his side won 2-0, Norway on 25 March and Romania on 22 April. But he added that the players called up for the match against the Americans were not guaranteed a place in his squad for the World Cup finals.

"If Scifo cannot accept that we experiment, that's his problem," Leekens said. "He is choosing the wrong way to express his opinion."