Ghana’s Kwadwo Asamoah Asks Not To Be Picked For AFCON

By Peter Pedroncelli Published: December 28, 2016, 5:42 am
Kwadwo Asamoah - JuventusKwadwo Asamoah representing Juventus -

Ghana international Kwadwo Asamoah has asked for coach and national team selectors to not include him in the Black Stars squad for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.

At a time when most players are working hard to earn a call-up to their national teams ahead of the premier continental competition, which takes place in Gabon this January, the Juventus midfielder is going against the grain, asking Ghana coach Avram Grant to let him opt out of the Nations Cup.

According to KickOff, the veteran former Udinese player would likely feature in Grant’s final 23-man squad, but the player has reportedly requested not to be considered.

The 28-year-old has made the decision with a view to focusing on his continued recovery from a knee injury that he sustained this year.

The combative midfielder has struggled with injuries over the past two seasons, spending a great deal of time recovering from a number of serious physical issues, the most recent of which was when he ruptured the meniscus cartilage in his knee in a Serie A match for club side Juventus in September.

Following a successful surgery, the player has returned to fitness for Juve, and is working his way back to first team status.

Kwadwo Asamoah absence huge loss for Ghana

Asamoah is a Black Stars stalwart, and a decision to opt out of the AFCON could not have been easy for him, but it is one that he has made with the intention of prolonging and protecting his career from a knee problem that threatens to derail it.

Travelling to the AFCON in Gabon could cause a relapse of the problem, and the midfielder would prefer to continue his steady return to the Juve fold. His Italian club will certainly support his decision.

With over 60 appearances for Ghana, including representing the Black Stars at four Nations Cups and two World Cups, the team loses a very experienced member and one of their leaders in the squad.

His absence will be a big blow to coach Grant and his team ahead of the Nations Cup, as they try to go one step further than they did in 2015 when they lost the final on a penalty shootout to Cote D’Ivoire.

Ghana will face Uganda, Mali and Egypt in Group D.

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