Sadio Mane, Riyad Mahrez, Yaya Toure, Eric Bailly and Wilfried Bony off for the African Cup of Nations
Every two years the African Cup of Nations is played in the first two months of the year and whilst it’s an incredible spectacle for African football it gives Premier League managers a selection headache.
Some Premier League clubs could be without some of their players for up to five weeks with Champions Leicester set to lose four players.
Over the weekend the final places for the 2017’s African Cup of Nations, which is being held in Gabon from January to February, were confirmed.
The shocks included Guinea-Bissau qualifying for the first time in their history and Uganda making it to the finals for the first time since 1978. There is the notable absence of Nigeria who failed to qualify for the second successive competition.
There is frustration at Old Trafford with the news that Ivory Coast qualified meaning that new signing Eric Bailly is likely to be out for up to five weeks. This comes as a huge blow especially considering he has been one of the signings of the season so far.
Liverpool’s new signing Sadio Mane will miss four matches, because of international commitments with Senegal, including Manchester United away and Chelsea at home.
Leicester City will be hurt with the loss of record signing Islam Slimani (Algeria), Riyad Mahrez (Algeria), Jeff Schlupp (Ghana) and Daniel Amartey (Ghana).
The tournament runs from 14th January to 5th February.
The players who are expected to be out of Premier League action:
Arsenal: Mohamed Elneny (Egypt).
Bournemouth: Max Gradel (Ivory Coast).
Crystal Palace: Bakary Sako (Mali), Pape N’Diaye Souare (Senegal).
Everton: Idrissa Gueye (Senegal), Yannick Bolasie (DR Congo).
Leicester City: Islam Slimani (Algeria), Riyad Mahrez (Algeria), Jeff Schlupp (Ghana), Daniel Amartey (Ghana).
Liverpool: Sadio Mane (Senegal).
Manchester United: Eric Bailly (Ivory Coast).
Manchester City: Yaya Toure (Ivory Coast).
Stoke City: Wilfried Bony (Ivory Coast), Mame Biram Diouf (Senegal), Ramadan Sobhi (Egypt).
Sunderland: Lamine Kone (Ivory Coast), Wahbi Khazri (Tunisia).
Watford: Nordin Amrabat (Morocco).
West Brom: Allan Nyom (Cameroon).
West Ham: Andre Ayew (Ghana), Cheikhou Kouyate (Senegal).
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