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Burkina Faso name injured skipper in squad for Cup of Nations finals

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Bertrand Traore , playing for Aston Villa receives medical attention after falling over the advertising boards during the Premier League against Newcastle United (Image: Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Burkina Faso named injured captain Bertrand Traore in their squad for next month’s African Cup of Nations finals, with coach Hubert Velud confident he will be fit on time for the tournament in the Ivory Coast.

Traore was injured after scoring for Burkina Faso in both World Cup qualifiers they played in November and has not seen action at Aston Villa since but Velud said on Tuesday he was a confident the 28-year-old striker would be available for the tournament, which kicks off on Jan. 13.

“I’m not particularly worried about him. He is someone who is used to high levels,” Velud told a press conference as he revealed his 27-man squad.

If he plays Traore, 28, will be competing in his fifth Cup of Nations while fullback Steeve Yago and midfielder Adama Guira are back for a fourth.

There were few surprises in the squad but both Cyrille Bayala and Lassina Traore miss out because of inury.

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Burkina Faso, who were semi-finals at the last Cup of Nations in Cameroon two years ago, compete in Group D and begin their campaign against Mauritania in Bouake on Jan. 16. They also play against Algeria and Angola in their opening group round.

They will warm-up for the tournament at a training camp in Abu Dhabi from Dec. 29-Jan, 10 and play two warm-up internationals. One is against the Democratic Republic of Congo but the other opponent is not yet finalised.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Herve Koffi (Charleroi), Hilel Konate (Chateauroux), Kilian Nikiema (ADO Den Haag), Sebastien Tou (Sabadell)

Defenders: Issoufou Dayo (Renaissance Berkane), Nasser Djiga (Red Star Belgrade), Abdoul Razack Guiebre (Modena), Issa Kabore (Luton Town), Adamo Nagalo (Nordsjaelland), Valentin Nouma (FC St Eloi Lupopo), Edmond Tapsoba (Bayer Leverkusen), Steeve Yago (Aris Limassol)

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Midfielders: Sacha Banse (Valenciennes), Adama Guira (Racing Rioja), Stephane Aziz Ky (Young Africans), Ismahila Ouedraogo (Panserraikos), Dramane Salou (Urartu), Gustavo Sangare (Quevilly-Rouen Metropole), Blati Toure (Pyramids)

Forwards: Cedric Badolo (Sheriff Tiraspol), Hassan Bande (HJK Helsinki), Mamady Bangre (Toulouse), Mohamed Konate (Akhmat Grozny), Djribil Ouattara (Renaissance Berkane), Dango Ouattara (Bournemouth), Abdoul Tapsoba (Amiens), Bertrand Traore (Aston Villa).

-Reuters

 

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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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