Wales captain Craig Bellamy is out of tonight’s World Cup qualifier with Germany in Cardiff.
The 29-year-old Manchester City striker left the squad today and returned to his club for treatment on the knee injury that has troubled him for a month.
Bellamy was highly critical of the Welsh team’s performance in Saturday’s home defeat by Finland in another Group Four qualifier, but Football Association of Wales sources insist this has had no bearing on his departure from the side.
A spokesman said: “Craig has difficulty playing two games in five days and, although we have tried to keep this quiet, he returned to his club today.”
Wales will also be without midfielder Jason Koumas, who has a hip injury.
The absence of two of boss John Toshack’s Premier League players further weakens a side whose confidence has been badly hit following criticism of the 2-0 defeat by the Finns.
Toshack is likely to bring in Bellamy’s club-mate Ched Evans up front and he has several options in midfield to replace Koumas.