Nice refuse to release Cameroon's Ignatius Ganago for Under-23 Afcon

By Njie EnowFootball Writer, Cameroon
Nice and Cameroon's Ignatius Ganago
Cameroon's Ignatius Ganago has been in impressive form at French club Nice

French club Nice have refused to release Cameroon's Ignatius Ganago for November's Under-23 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.

The 20-year-old forward is not in coach Rigobert Song's 21-man squad for the finals, which will also decide Africa's three teams for the 2020 men's Olympic football tournament.

Ganago scored the goal in Tunisia that saw Cameroon win the tie on away goals rule and so qualify for a first appearance at the Under-23 Nations Cup.

The goal also saw him get a first call-up to the senior Cameroon squad for their friendly against Tunisia in October.

He has been in fine fettle for Nice as well netting twice in 11 games in the French top-flight, which has led to the club's refusal to release him for the tournament to be played from 8-22 November.

"The Afcon is being played at a time when most European championships are in full swing and many clubs are hesitant on releasing their players." Cameroon's team manager Raymond Kalla said in an interview with the Cameroon Radio Television.

"That's the case with Ganago who is a key player for Nice."

Four other France-based players have been given permission to play in the finals; Anaba Mbida Raphael, Guy Marcelin Kilama, Stephane Zobo and Pierre Fonkeu.

Song's three goalkeepers for the finals are all home-based players.

The team will leave Cameroon on 31 October for Ismailia where they begin training the next day.

Cameroon will play hosts Egypt, Mali and Ghana in Group A.

Cameroon squad:

Goalkeepers: Junior Dande (Apejes Mfou), Simon Omossola (Coton Sport), Pierre Abogo (Tonnerre Kalara Club)

Defenders: Jules Youmeni Deugoue (Roskilde, Denmark), Raphael Anaba Mbida (Lyon, France), Olivier Mbaizo (Philadelphia Union, USA), Duplexe Tchamba (Stromsgodset, Norway), Oumar Gonzalez (Chambly, France), Guy Kilama (Niort, France) Nouhou Tolo (Seattle Sounders, USA)

Midfielders: Samuel Oum Gouet (Rheindorf, Altach, Austria) Kevin Soni (Espanyol, Spain) Yan Eteki (Granada, Spain), Victor Mpindi (Sonderjyske, Denmark), Martin Hongla (Royal Antwerp, Belgium)

Forwards: Stephane Zobo (Toulouse, France), Michael Cheukoua (Sv Horn, Austria), Eric Ayuk Mbu (Osmanlispor, Turkey) Franck Evina (Uerdingen 05, Germany) Pierre Fonkeu (Lens, France), Herve Ngan Biti (PAE Kerkyra, Greece)

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