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By ESPN Staff

Vidic puts club over country, for now

Nemanja Vidic will not allow his club form to be affected by thoughts of this summer's World Cup.

The Manchester United defender was expected to be one of the stars at Germany 2006 but ended up missing the entire competition after suffering a knee ligament injury before the tournament began. Now Vidic has the chance to make amends after Serbia qualified and ended up in a tough group with Germany, Ghana and Australia.

Given his experience last time around, the 28-year-old could be forgiven for taking things slightly tentatively in order to ensure his presence in South Africa. But that is just not Vidic's style.

''I am not thinking that far ahead,'' said the former Spartak Moscow star. ''Sometimes when you do that you can cause yourself an injury, so the best way is just try to play the next game and then the one after that, and so on.

''There is still so much time to the World Cup so for now I am concentrating on the big matches I have with Manchester United.''

Not that Vidic ignored the World Cup draw itself earlier this month. He recalls how Serbia ended up in the so-called ''Group of Death'' with Argentina, Holland and the Ivory Coast four years ago.

It is hardly much better now, although Vidic does feel his country is in good shape to progress, providing they emerge with a positive result in their opening game against Ghana in Pretoria on June 13.

''It is very important to start well,'' he said. ''We had a problem with injuries last time and were in a difficult group to start with and it just didn't go well. Obviously it is not easy this time either but I don't think we should complain about that.

''We have some players who are at good teams in Europe and we still have a chance to reach the next round.''


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