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Guinea captain Keita returns for 2026 World Cup qualifiers, injured Guirassy named



Guinea captain Naby Keita has been named in the country’s 23-man squad for this month’s 2026 World Cup qualifiers against Uganda and Botswana after recovering from injury.

In-form Stuttgart forward Serhou Guirassy was also named in the squad despite missing his club’s last three games with a hamstring problem.

Additionally, the 21-year-old defender Naby Oularé from Boluspor in the Turkish second division is set to make his debut in the national selection.

Notably, this list sees the return of their captain Keïta for the two matches scheduled to take place against Uganda on November 17 and Botswana on November 21.

After being sidelined due to injuries during recent national team matches, Kéïta, the talented midfielder from Werder Bremen, will be making a comeback as they start their World Cup campaign.


His presence is poised to offer the Syli National a significant boost as they prepare for these crucial fixtures.

Coach Kaba Diawara opted to call up Guirassy, despite the striker’s recent injury.

Guirassy has been a formidable presence in the Bundesliga this season, amassing an impressive 14 goals in just 8 games.

With the national Syli eager to regain the services of this Stuttgart star, his inclusion in the squad is a testament to his importance to the team.

Another standout returnee to the squad is the prolific striker Mohamed Bayo, who is currently in dazzling form with Le Havre.


Over the weekend, he showcased his prowess by netting an impressive brace taking season’s tally to 14 goals so far.

The inclusion of other familiar names like Mory Konaté, Julian Jeanvier, and Mohamed Ali Camara further bolsters the Syli National squad.

The availability of the top players provides a major boost to Guinea as they aim to qualify for the global finals for the first time.

The Syli Nationale know topping such a competitive group would represent a monumental feat three years out from the 2026 tournament.

Coach Diawara will hope Keita, Bayo and Guirassy can fire Guinea to the double victory needed to edge closer to a maiden World Cup appearance.


Guinea have been played in a tough Group G where they will play Algeria, Uganda, Mozambique, Botswana and Somalia.

Only the nine group winners will automatically qualify for the finals in USA, Canada and Mexico – and one team will enter the FIFA play-off tournament




  • Ibrahim Koné (Hibernians FC, Malta)
  • Aly Kéita (Ostersunds, Sweden)
  • Moussa Camara (Horoya AC, Guinea)


  • Sékou Oumar Sylla (SC Cambuur, Netherlands)
  • Naby Youssouf Oularé (Boluspor, Turkey)
  • Julian Jeanvier (Kayserispor, Turkey)
  • Saidou Sow (Strasbourg, France)
  • Abdourahmane Barry (Amiens SC, France)
  • Mohamed Ali Camara (Young Boys, Switzerland)
  • Dembo Sylla (Lorient, France)
  • Antoine Conté (Botev Plovdiv, Bulgaria)


  • Amadou Diawara (Anderlecht, Belgium)
  • Abdoulaye Touré (Le Havre, France)
  • Seydouba Cissé (Leganes, Spain)
  • Mory Konaté (KV Malines, Belgium)
  • Moriba Kourouma (RB Leipzig, Germany)
  • Naby Kéita (SV Werder Bremen, Germany)


  • François Kamano (Abha FC, Saudi Arabia)
  • Morgan Guilavogui (RC Lens, France)
  • Karim Cissé (AS Saint-Étienne, France)
  • Aguibou Camara (Atromitos, Greece)
  • Serhou Guirassy (Stuttgart, Germany)
  • Mohamed Bayo (Le Havre, France)







Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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