Harambee Stars lose star defender Mandela to knee injury ahead of AFCON
Harambee Stars have been dealt a major blow after dependable centre back Brian "Niang" Mandela was injured in training ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations scheduled to kick off on June 21.
Stars coach Sébastien Migné said Mandela injured his knee in a Monday morning training session, and will not be fit in time.
“Brian got injured today in training. He is one of our key players and will not be available for AFCON. We will need to find a solution.
“It is not good for us and for him as well. Musa Mohamed also picked up a knock (in Harambee Stars’ friendly match against Madagascar). We cannot take a risk with him against DRC but he could be available for AFCON,” said Migné.
The firebrand coach, however, pointed out that a solution would be found before the Cairo showdown.
“We won against Ghana without key players. It is always problematic for the coach but we will try to find a solution,” he said.
Migné named the final team set to participate in the 2019 AFCON on Tuesday.
Four players were axed from the initial 27-man squad among them Sweden-based winger Christopher Mbamba, Anthony Akumu, Clifton Miheso and Brian "Niang" Mandela.
Musa Mohamed was included in the list as well as Abud Omar, who limped off late in the match.
Kenya still have one friendly match against the Democratic Republic of Congo set to be played on Saturday, June 15, 2019, in Madrid, Spain.
The four-week long event in Egypt will run from June 21st- July 19.
Kenya will face Algeria in the opening match of the tournament.
Final AFCON Squad:
Patrick Matasi, John Oyemba, Faruk Shikalo
Philemon Otieno, Abud Omar, Bernard Ochieng, Musa Mohammed, Joash Onyango, Joseph Okumu, David Owino, Eric Ouma
Victor Wanyama, Dennis Odhiambo, Erick Johanna, Ayub Timbe, Francis Kahata, Ismael Gonzalez, Ovella Ochieng, Paul Were, Johanna Omollo
Masud Juma, Michael Olunga, John Avire
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