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Friday, 24 May, 2002, 15:26 GMT 16:26 UK
Deisler faces lengthy lay-off
Germany's Sebastian Deisler
Deisler has lost a long battle with injuries
Sebastian Deisler will be sidelined for six months with his knee problem after having already missed out on the World Cup.

The 22-year-old midfielder was operated on in Vail, Colorado on Wednesday after a bad tackle by Rolf Landerl during Germany's 6-2 win over Austria left him in a heap.

The injury means that Deisler will miss the start of the season with his new club Bayern Munich.

The midfielder left Hertha Berlin at the end of the sesaon after three years and signed until 2006 with the Bavarian club.

"It's a big blow, but it's not about us, but about Sebastian's health," said Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld.

Deisler has had 15 injuries in his four-year Bundesliga career and has managed to play just 56 matches in those years.

During last season Deisler was also sidelined five months for a previous operation on the knee in October.

Deisler is the fourth senior player to pull out of Rudi Voller's World Cup squad.

Fellow midfielder Mehmet Scholl and central defenders Jens Nowotny and Christian Worns have already been ruled out through injury.

Deisler's absence will put more even responsibility on the shoulders of former Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Michael Ballack.


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GROUP E
  P GD PTS
GERMANY 3 +10 7
IRELAND 3 +3 5
CAMEROON 3 -1 4
SAUDI ARABIA 3 -12 0

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