It has emerged that many foreign-based players called upon to represent Ghana in Thursday’s 2021 AFCON qualifiers failed to turn up because their clubs are unwilling to release them.
This is due to reported cases of Covid-19 in the camp of the senior national football team, the Black Stars, after last month’s international friendly matches against Mali and Qatar.
Six of the players including Crystal star, Jordan Ayew, tested positive for the disease on their return to their clubs. Besiktas midfielder, Bernard Mensah, was the first to be announced positive. Celta Vigo defender Joseph Aidoo, Hoffenheim centre-back Kasim Nuhu Adams and Vitoria Guimaraes left-back Gideon Mensah all reported to have been infected as well as Trabzonspor forward ,Caleb Ekuban.
About four players called by the Coach, Charles Akonnor, could not show up for the double-header citing varied reasons. They include Arsenal midfielder Thomas Partey who pulled out following an injury he sustained during a Premier League game with Aston Villa, as well US-based right-back, Harrison Afful.
China-based Mubarak Wakaso is also said to have withdrawn from Akonnor’s squad due to club commitments while Germany U21 winger, Jamie Leweling, however, rejected a call-up to the Black Stars.
Speaking in an interview ahead of the crucial game scheduled for Thursday, November 12, 2020, skipper Andre Ayew revealed that the foreign-based players had issues with their last camping in Turkey where some of them contracted the disease.
“We had issues with the last camping with COVID-19. Players who had it, it’s been difficult for some clubs letting their players come and play for us. But I think that ,” the Ghana captain said.
He was however, for those who responded to the call because “we showed that everyone is ready for play for the nation and knows what it means to wear the jersey so I am very happy.”