- Associated Press - Thursday, May 12, 2016

BRUSSELS (AP) - Vincent Kompany was officially left off Belgium’s 23-man squad for next month’s European Championship on Thursday.

Belgium coach Marc Wilmots said Kompany’s absence is “a shame for him, for the team.”

“Let’s not cry about it,” Wilmots added, “we are looking resolutely to the future.”

Kompany was injured early in Manchester City’s loss at Real Madrid in the Champions League semifinals and had already said he would miss the tournament in France.

Liverpool forwards Divock Origi and Christian Benteke were named in the squad, despite Origi’s ankle injury and Benteke’s struggle to get into Liverpool’s first team.

“Every time I have seen him play, whether it was for only 10 minutes or a quarter of an hour, he was good,” Wilmots said of Benteke.

Wilmots named nine defenders amid doubts over injuries but will drop one by May 31, the UEFA deadline for squad lists.

Tottenham defender Toby Alderweireld is expected to fill in for Kompany, controlling the center of defense, while Manchester City forward Kevin De Bruyne will play up front.

“I think it’s essential to have three attackers,” Wilmots said. “Kevin is the perfect man to hold up the ball.”

Wilmots also named seven players on standby.

At Euro 2016, Belgium will play in Group E along with Italy, Ireland and Sweden.

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Squad:

Goalkeepers: Thibault Courtois (Chelsea), Simon Mignolet (Liverpool), Jean-Francois Gillet (Mechelen)

Defenders: Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham), Dedryck Boyata (Celtic), Jason Denayer (Galatasaray), Bjorn Engels (Club Brugge), Nicolas Lombaerts (Zenit St. Petersburg), Jordan Lukaku (Oostende), Thomas Meunier (Club Brugge), Thomas Vermaelen (Barcelona), Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham)

Midfielders: Mousa Dembele (Tottenham), Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United), Axel Witsel (Zenit St. Petersburg), Radja Naingollan (Roma)

Forwards: Michy Batshuayi (Marseille), Christian Benteke (Liverpool), Yannick Carrasco (Atletico Madrid), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Romelu Lukaku (Everton), Dries Mertens (Napoli), Divock Origi (Liverpool)

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