Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will miss Gabon’s Africa Cup of Nations match against Ghana after medical staff noticed “heart injuries” after the Arsenal striker completed his recovery from the Corona virus.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang disappeared from the Gabon squad on Friday night
- The Panthers will face Ghana in their second match in the Africa Cup of Nations
- But Aubameyang did not mention his name in the team despite his recovery from Covid
- The Arsenal striker missed Gabon’s win over Comoros but was training this week
- According to reports, Arsenal believe all is well with the striker after the Gabon talks
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been left out of Gabon’s squad for their second Africa Cup of Nations group game with Ghana after medics discovered he was suffering from ‘heart lesions’ after contracting the coronavirus.
The Arsenal striker missed his country’s win over Comoros on Monday after testing positive for Covid-19 – and while he was back in training earlier this week, medical staff noted he had minor heart problems after recovering.
The Gabonese Football Federation revealed in a statement that the Confederation of African Football (CAF) “does not want to risk” Aubameyang’s fitness, and his teammates Mario Lemina and Axel May also missed the Ghana match for the same reason.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been left out of Gabon’s squad for the Africa Cup of Nations match with Ghana
Medical staff noted that Aubameyang and two others had ‘heart lesions’ after contracting Covid
A statement from the Gabon federation read: “Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Axel Meye and Mario Lemina are barely out of Covid (isolation) and cannot participate in this match.
Examinations (medical) showed cardiac lesions. The CAF did not want to take any chances.
According to The Athletic, Arsenal have been in contact with the Gabonese medical team about Aubameyang’s situation and believe all is well with their former captain.
The striker is a key figure in Gabon having scored 29 goals in 71 internationals for his country, including three of his six matches during 2021.
Aubameyang was expected to face his Arsenal team-mate Thomas Partey on Friday night, but now only the 28-year-old midfielder will line up in Cameroon for the match.
Gabon has chosen Qatar striker Aaron Bubendza and Saint-Etienne striker Denis Bouanga as its attacking options for the Ghana match, with no sign of Aubameyang on the ten-man bench.
Gabon faced Ghana on Friday night as they looked to reach the knockout stages of the Africa Cup of Nations with a win
Gabon knows a win over Ghana will take it to the knockout stages of the tournament, while the Black Stars are looking to cross the tournament mark after losing their opening Group C match to Morocco this week.
But the Panthers, who are led by Aubameyang, must dispense with coach Patrice Neveu, who has tested positive for coronavirus, in preparation for Friday’s game. The Gabonese federation said defender Lloyd Ballon and striker Kevin Maye would also be absent after the tests came back positive.
The exact source of the outbreak inside the Gabon camp remains unclear, but footage emerged on social media of players socializing at a pre-tournament camp in Dubai before the Arsenal striker tested positive.
Aubameyang was photographed celebrating with fellow Gabonese teammate Lemina, formerly for Fulham and Southampton and now at Ligue 1 Club Nice.
Aubameyang was photographed celebrating in Dubai with his Gabonese teammate Mario Lemina last week
Aubameyang said he was fine after a week of isolation in his room and posted two photos of him while training on his Instagram account.
I had the opportunity to be able to work in my room. I got on a bike and did a circuit, trying to keep as fit as possible.
It’s not going to be easy, because it’s not the same as the rhythm of a match or proper training, but we’ll get it done.
We are going to play against a very difficult opponent who needs to win the match, so we have to be as serious as we were in the first match. I know we’ll have our chances.”