Manchester City midfielder YayaToure has been left out of Ivory Coast’s squad for this weekend’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Gabon because of injury, the Ivorian Football Federation said on Monday. Toure had seemingly finished the season with Manchester City last month without any ill effects. The federation have since announced he had suffered an injury without giving more details.
The Elephants’ interim coach Ibrahim Kamara, who has been appointed caretaker coach replacing departed HerveRenard, announced the 23-man squad for the Gabon game including new arrivals from the domestic league, D’Avila Ba Loua of Asec Mimosas and BayoVakoumIssouf of Staded’Abidjan.
Interim coach Ibrahima Kamara is also without Yaya’s brother KoloToure, who retired from the international game after Ivorian success in the Africa Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea at the start of the year. While Salomon Kalou, Wilfried Bony and Gervinho have all been named in the Ivory Coast squad. All of these players were present in the squad that won the last African Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea.
The four-time African Footballer of the Year helped Ivory Coast win the Africa Cup of Nations this year – the first time since 1992, and produced some fine displays with Manchester City this season, scoring ten goals in 28 Premier League appearances.
He frequently plays as a box-to-box midfielder for club and country and often switches from defensive and attacking positions throughout matches. Touré began his playing career at Ivorian club ASEC Mimosas, where he made his debut aged 18. He was voted African Footballer of the Year for 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014.
Toure’s performances attracted attention from Europe, playing for clubs in various European leagues.
Touré played for Beveren in Belgium, Metalurh Donetsk in Ukraine, Olympiacos in Greece, and AS Monaco in France. In 2007, Touré moved to Barcelona, playing over 100 matches for the club and was part of the historic 2009 Barcelona team which won six trophies in one calendar year.
Ivory Coast have been drawn in Group I of the 2017 qualifiers along with Sudan, Sierra Leone and Gabon. The Ivorian squad for the trip to Libreville includes Wilfried Bony, Gervinho and Salomon Kalou, who were all part of the Africa Cup of Nations winning side in February. Sunday’s match in Libreville forms part of the Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign although the result will not count as Gabon are hosts of the 2017 finals.
Although part of the qualifying process, matches involving Gabon in Group I will not count towards the final standings as Gabon are 2017 tournament hosts and qualify automatically.