Trapattoni misses Argentina game after having minor stomach surgery

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The Independent Football

Giovanni Trapattoni, the Republic of Ireland manager, is likely to remain in hospital over the weekend after yesterday undergoing minor abdominal surgery that forced him to miss last night's game against Argentina.

Trapattoni endured continued abdominal pain after suffering from food poisoning this week, and tests discovered it was as a result of minor scar tissue from a previous operation. Following consultation with a surgeon at Dublin's Mater Hospital, it was decided the Italian would undergo surgery to relieve the pain.

A Football Association of Ireland statement read: "Giovanni Trapattoni has had a successful and straightforward minor surgical procedure performed in the Mater Hospital. He is now in recovery and will be returned to the ward in the next few hours. It is anticipated he will remain in hospital to recover over the weekend."

Trapattoni arrived in Dublin on Sunday suffering with vomiting and nausea caused by food poisoning from eating shellfish in Italy. It resulted in the 71-year-old being taken to hospital in the early hours of Tuesday and he remained overnight after undergoing a series of blood and urine tests, as well as X-rays and an ECG.

The FAI stated earlier yesterday that Trapattoni's progress throughout the night had been "slightly behind expectations", resulting in further tests being conducted. The continual vomiting was believed to have aggravated the scar tissue, so causing the abdominal pains that necessitated the surgery. It meant Trapattoni was confined to watching Ireland's prestigious friendly against Argentina last night on television from his hospital bed.

Assistant manager Marco Tardelli took charge of the game, the Republic's first at their new home, the £350m, 50,000-seater Aviva Stadium.

Meanwhile, Diego Maradona's assistant said that the former Argentina coach had received job offers from two clubs in Brazil and a national team in Europe. But Alejandro Mancuso, a member of Maradona's coaching staff with the national team, gave no details of the offers. Maradona's reign as Argentina's national coach ended last month, three weeks after the team was knocked out of the World Cup in a 4-0 quarter-final loss to Germany. "If the offers have popped up, it's because we did something well," Mancuso said.

Mancuso was one of the assistants the Argentina football federation asked Maradona to replace, a condition for him to have his contract renewed. Maradona refused to fire his long-time friend, which precipitated his departure. The Argentina youth coach, Sergio Batista, took over as interim coach and is among a handful of candidates said to be in the running for the position, including Alejandro Sabella, Carlos Bianchi, Diego Simeone and Claudio Borghi.