Asamoah, Jordan Miss Out On AFCON Qualifiers

Black Stars caretaker coach Maxwell Konadu may have to make some difficult choices as he prepares to name his squad to face the Cranes of Uganda next week without the influential presence of midfielder Kwadwo Asamoah and young forward Jordan Ayew, both of whom have been ruled out of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Kampala.

Ayew, who has rediscovered his scoring form for his French side Lorient, was automatically suspended from the November 15 clash after attracting two yellow cards, but is expected to make a return when Ghana host Togo in two weeks’ time.

However, Asamoah will be missing from Ghana’s next two Group E qualifying matches due to an inflamed knee injury which will keep him out of action for two weeks. The Juventus star sustained the injury during an Italian Serie A clash with Empoli last Saturday and only passed a late fitness test to feature for his club in their 3-2 win over Olympiakos in an UEFA Champions League clash.

The Turin club announced last Wednesday that the Ghanaian had been placed on a 15-day rest for recuperation, therefore ruling him out of the November 15 clash with which the Cranes, and a home game with the Hawks of Togo four days later.

“He has been asked to rest for 15 days as a precautionary measure. “We’re reviewing the situation and wait after the international break,” a club’s statement read.

Asamoah and Ayew have both featured in Ghana’s three qualifying matches so far, thus handing coach Konadu some selection headaches, with Turkey-based striker Abdul Majeed Waris, Everton loanee Christian Atsu and Celtic midfielder Mubarak Wakaso all candidates likely to be handed starting roles in the team.

Uganda started the qualifiers on a bright note after beating Guinea 2-0 at home and holding Ghana to a 1-1 draw in Kumasi on September 6, but later lost grounds after back-to-back losses to Togo.

Currently third on the log in Group E, the Cranes’ head coach,

Milutin Sredojevi, has vowed to win next week’s clash to brighten his team’s chances of qualifying for the continent’s flagship competition for the first time since 1978.

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