And here is an amusing, feeble (though legit) excuse.
Frog Chorus Keeps Ukraine Soccer Players Awake
Ukraine’s World Cup players complained on Tuesday that frogs were disturbing the sleep of the squad at their lakeside hotel in Potsdam.
Central defender Vladislav Vashchyuk told the Sovetsky sports newspaper that frogs in the Templiner See lake were keeping the players awake at night ahead of their Group H opener against Spain on Wednesday.
“We have agreed we will take fishing rods to hunt these frogs,” said Vashchyuk.
Hartmut Pirl, manager of the hotel where the squad are staying, told Reuters he had not had any complaints.
“There are frogs that croak. This is a nature reserve,” said Pirl.
A ready excuse for getting spanked by Spain, or a genuine gripe with nature? The world may never know.