Crystal Palace players could miss Afcon qualifiers


Pep Guardiola and Roy Hodgson have opened up on releasing players for international duty.

Speaking to the media, The duo joined a host of English Premier League coaches who have made it clear that they won’t allow their players to travel to the red-list travel ban countries during the upcoming international break.

Jurgen Klopp was the first coach to speak out on the matter saying he will bare his players from traveling if they would need to quarantine on their return.

Guardiola has shared the same sentiments saying it won’t make sense for them to release players if they will then be out for 10 days upon their return.

FIFA has given clubs the right to prevent players who may be affected by the regulations from joining up with their countries during the international window at the end of this month.

“I think it makes no sense if the players go to the national team and then have to isolate for 10 days when they come back,” he said.

“We’ve worked incredibly tough for seven, eight or nine months and after the international break comes the real part of the season, and if important players, maybe six, seven, eight, nine players cannot play for 10 days, it makes no sense.

“They are not going to fly. That’s for sure. If they can fly, play with the national team and come straight back to training, they’ll fly.”

Some nations have moved fixtures in order to try to avoid travel restrictions. Portugal announced that they will play their home game against Azerbaijan in Turin, while Norway will face Turkey in Malaga.

Ghana internationals Jeffrey Schlupp and Jordan Ayew could be selected to play an away game against South Africa this month, while Cheikhou Kouyate’s Senegal are due to face the Democratic Republic of Congo. Palace manager Roy Hodgson has made it clear that he will also refuse to release his affected players.

“Certainly as far as the red-list countries are concerned, I don’t think there is anything to discuss on that matter.

“It would be my suggestion teams like Ghana and any other teams who have games where it will involve them playing in a red-list country, if they are that interested in English-based players, to try and maybe move the game to somewhere where the players could travel to.”

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By Prince Sobayeni 

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