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    Wed, Aug 10

    MICHAEL Kempter is facing the prospects of missing the next fixtures of the Philippine Azkals in the 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers due to a broken nose.

    The Azkals left back suffered the injury in the first half and never returned after a collision with a China player in its 2-0 defeat on Monday night at the Sharjah Stadium in United Arab Emirates.

    The 26-year-old Kempter made his debut with the Azkals in 2019, with the Fil-Swedish playing for Neuchatel Xamax in the Switzerland second division.

    Azkals coach Scott Cooper bared that Kempter broke his nose, and was upset that no call was made. Cooper, however, was even more flabbergasted with the response of one of the referees when he asked about the injury at halftime.

    “What I can say is in the first half, my left back had his nose broken,” a visibly-upset Cooper said during the postmatch press conference. “That doesn’t happen unless someone breaks it.”

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    “When I asked the referee at halftime how his nose got broken, you know what the referee said to me? He laughed at me and said ‘Ha ha, he broke his own nose.’ That’s what the referee said to me at halftime. I want to ask anybody in the media to see if you think that’s acceptable.”

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    Cooper said he doesn’t know the identity of the referee, but is looking for answers as to why the official behaved in that manner.


      “I don’t know where that referee comes from. I don’t have any problem with anything else but when you tell me at halftime, ‘Ha ha, he broke his own nose, I don’t think you should be refereeing for a long time because that is clearly unacceptable behavior from an official to say like that to a coach when all I asked him was how do you think this happened.”

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      “Let the referee answer that question, or by the referee assessor, or anybody else. I just want to know why is it funny and why is my player broke his own nose. That’s what I want to know. Answer that question for me. Somebody, because I don’t understand that kind of response. It’s unprofessional,” said Cooper.

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