6 players that will be missed the most during African Cup of Nations
Being hosted by Equatorial Guinea, the African Cup of Nations is scheduled between 17th of January to the 8th of February.A total of sixteen players from eleven Premier League clubs has left the United Kingdom for the continent of Africa to join their national team with some clubs expected to miss the services of their key players, left for the AFCON until February. Here, in this slideshow, we talk about 6 clubs that will be affected the most by the African Cup of Nations along with their potential replacements.
#1 Southampton -Sadio Mane
Having disappointed the Southampton fans at the start of the season due to the indifferent showing of forms, Mane rewarded them with a superlative form in the past recent games against opponents like Arsenal and Chelsea.
Representing Senegal in the African Cup of Nations, the Lions of Teranga face African giants Ghana in their opening AFCON fixture on the 19th of January followed by South Africa in the 23rd and Algeria on the 27th, meaning the Saints to miss the midfielder for a minimum of two games.
With 7 goals and 2 assists in his 934 minutes for the Saints, Mane will miss the away clash against Newcastle on the 17th followed by the FA Cup tie against Crystal Palace at St. Marys on the 24th of January.
However, if Senegal manages to progress all their way into the final of the African Cup of Nations on the 8th of February, Mane would miss a further of four games instead of two with Swansea City on the 1st and Queens Park Rangers on the 8th of February.
Conversely, Ronald Koeman seems like to have no shortage in replacing the Senegalese. Already having Shane Long who can play in the same position, the Saints brought the Dutch winger Eljero Elia on loan from Wender Bremen as a cover for Mane thus, making it somewhat easy for Koeman to operate the line-up without the Senegalese.