Robinho
Ricardo Moraes  /  AP
Robinho won't play for Brazil in the Olympics because of a groin injury.
updated 7/21/2008 7:27:16 PM ET 2008-07-21T23:27:16

Robinho was dropped from the Brazilian Olympic team on Monday after Real Madrid said a medical examination discovered the striker has a groin injury.

The Brazilian football confederation criticized the Spanish club and said the decision was a “disrespect to the entity, to football and to Brazilian fans.”

Brazil physiotherapist Luiz Alberto Rosan said he knew of Robinho’s injury, but that the player would have had time to heal before the Olympic tournament.

The Spanish powerhouse said the injury was discovered when the player arrived for a medical examination and light training along with most of the club’s squad.

“The best thing for the player is to complete preseason training with the squad where he will be given rehabilitation tailored to his injury and where he will be under constant supervision,” the club said.

The 24-year-old forward said he was disappointed about having to miss the Beijing Games.

“Unhappily, I can’t go with Brazil to the games, but it is Real Madrid’s decision and I respect it,” Robinho said.

Robinho’s agent, Wagner Ribeiro, said he has never seen the player “so sad.”

“He is an extremely happy person,” Ribeiro told the UOL Web site. “The last time I saw him like this was when his mother was kidnapped.”

Robinho’s mother was kidnapped and later released unharmed in Brazil in 2004.

Robinho had not joined Madrid for a preseason camp in Algarve, Portugal, as he was preparing to join Brazil for the Olympics. On Monday, however, he flew with the Spanish champion to Graz in Austria prior to a training period at Irdning.

The Brazilian football confederation said in a statement that it “recognizes” Real Madrid’s right not to release the player, but lamented that the decision was announced on the day Robinho and his teammates were scheduled to begin preparations for the Beijing Games.

The confederation said it was “unhappy” with the decision not only because of the problems created to the national team’s planning but also because it considered the announcement “a disrespect to the entity, to football and to Brazilian fans.”

The CBF said that in 2007 it helped the Spanish club by allowing Robinho to delay his release for the Copa America, and that it was a surprise that Madrid reciprocate now.

Brazil coach Dunga summoned 21-year-old Cruzeiro midfielder Ramires as Robinho’s replacement.

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