Aubameyang to Zaha: How Africa Cup Of Nations Will Hit Premier League

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“I love the fact that we have so many African players … until the Africa Cup of Nations starts. Then it’s: ‘Oh my God!’”

Jürgen Klopp isn’t the only Premier League manager who will be thinking about the African Cup of Nations in the coming weeks. With the 33rd edition of the continental showcase set to kick off on 9 January in Cameroon, preparing for the absence of up to 40 players, ranging from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to Wilfried Zaha, amid one of the most rigorous periods of the domestic season would be a huge issue for many.

The event was moved back to its traditional mid-season position after the 2019 Cup of Nations in Egypt was hosted for the first time during the European summer, much to the chagrin of Klopp and European club managers, because June and July are part of Cameroon’s rainy season. After a year’s delay due to the pandemic, the tournament will begin in Yaoundé with the hosts taking on Burkina Faso.

Players must be released by their clubs on the 27th of December, 13 days before the tournament’s first match, according to Fifa regulations. Salah, Mané, and Keta would be available to play in Liverpool’s Premier League match against Leeds on Boxing Day, but not for the trip to Leicester two days later. However, depending on what can be arranged with their clubs, some may be granted special permission to join up with their national sides at a later period.

Source : Guardian sport

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