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Football

AFCON 2021: Aubameyang returns to training with Gabon, Gueye out for Senegal.

Pierre Emerick Aubameyang training with Gabon

Aubameyang returns to training with Gabon

Gabon has been handed a major shot in the arm ahead of their game with Ghana at the Africa Cup of Nations with striker and captain Pierre Emerick Aubameyang returns to full training with Gabon.

Aubameyang missed Gabon’s opening day win over Comoros after testing positive for COVID-19 following the team’s arrival in Cameroon. However, from Wednesday’s round testing, the captain returned a negative test.

Aubameyang says he is excited to be back and looks forward to helping the team in the crucial tie against the Ghanaians, with a win set to take them into the round of 16.

“I had the opportunity to still be able to work in my room. I was entitled to a bike and to run ona  treadmill. So I physically tried to keep as much shape as possible, of course it’s not going to be easy, because it’s not the pace of the match and the training, but we’ll live with it,” Aubameyang said after returning to training on the pitch.

He hopes he can inspire the team to victory against Ghana and aid them into the next round. In his absence for the first game, Gabon picked a 1-0 win over debutants Comoros, with Aaron Boupendza scoring the winner.

“I was already really happy that the guys got the job done in the first game, we’re all proud of them. Now it’s up to me to level up and bring all I can to the group,” he noted.

He added; “It always feels good to start the competition with a win. After that, you shouldn’t think that you won the CAN either. We’re going to play a very tough opponent who wants to win the game, so we’ll have to be serious like we were in the first game and I know we will have our chances.”

Aubameyang returns to training with Gabon

Senegal team during a training session

Meanwhile in the Senegalese camp, midfielder Idrissa Gana Gueye who skippered the team in their opening match against Zimbabwe as well as Fode Ballo have both tested positive for COVID-19 following Wednesday’s round of testing.

Gueye played a pivotal role in midfield and his absence will be a huge blow for the Senegalese.

Also still unavailable for the team is regular skipper Kaildou Koulibaly and goalkeeper Edouard Mendy who are yet to test negative after their initial positive tests before the opening game.

However, they have been boosted with the three players who had remained behind in Senegal after testing positive joining up with the team in Cameroon.

Nampalys Mendy, Pape Matar Sarr and Saliou Ciss have all travelled from Senegal to Cameroon. In their opening match against Zimbabwe which they won 1-0 via a late penalty, coach Alliou Cisse only had 17 players available.

Also

With three coming in and two set to miss out on isolation, he will have 18 at his disposal when the side takes on a tougher Guinea side in their second match on Friday. Guinea also won their opening  match against Malawi by a solitary goal.

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