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Top 15 African players already out of Qatar 2022 World Cup

Every professional footballer’s dream is to play at the FIFA World Cup with their countries but not all the dreams can come...

Every professional footballer’s dream is to play at the FIFA World Cup with their countries but not all the dreams can come true.   

Getting to play in the World Cup is considered the highpoint of their careers so most players who don’t feature often regret not partaking in the football fiesta.  

A good example that readily comes to mind when such a topic is discussed is former Africa and World Footballer of the Year, George Opone Weah of Liberia. He played for some of the best clubs in Europe and won so many trophies. Regrettably, he failed to appear at the World Cup with his country. 

To play in the World Cup, there are qualifying series to navigate through where the winners of groups and in other cases, play-offs get the slots.  

For the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, 40 nations in Africa were pitched in 10 groups and winners of the groups will go into the playoffs in March 2022 where the eventual five African representatives would emerge. 

This means, already 35 nations, including African giants like Ivory Coast will not be part of the World Cup in 2022. It is a big loss for the countries and their top stars who are plying their trade in Europe. The most hit country is the star-studded Ivory Coast.  

However, more top talents would join the list in March 2022. This is because out of 10 nations, Ghana, Nigeria, Mali, Egypt, Morocco, Cameroon, Congo DR, Senegal, Algeria and Tunisia, only five would be on the flight to Qatar. Therefore, more star players in Africa would join the “Qatar 2022 absentee squad”.  

Therefore, this is not the final list as more would be added once the final round of matches is concluded. For now, Trust Sports takes a look at the top 15 African stars that will be missing in action when the 2022 FIFA World Cup gets underway in Qatar.  

Pierre-Emerick Aubumeyang (Gabon)

The Gabonese striker is one of the most prominent names that will be missing in Qatar. He plays as a striker and is the captain of both Premier League club Arsenal and the Gabon national team. The prolific striker was unable to lead his side out of Group F as they came second behind Egypt after losing 3 games. He is Gabon’s highest goal scorer with 29 goals.

Naby Keita (Guinea)

Injury prone Liverpool midfielder will not have the chance to put Guinea on the world map and show his dexterity on the ball. The UEFA Champions League winner is an integral part of Guinea side who came third in Group I behind Guinea Bissau and winners, Morocco.

Nicolas Pepe (Ivory Coast)

The pacy Arsenal forward has missed the golden opportunity to show the world that the £72 million paid to bring him to Emirates is not waste. He has been plagued with injuries but when fit, he can be devastating. Missing Qatar 2022 is no doubt a major setback for him.

Patson Daka (Zambia)

The Leicester City forward made his debut for Zambia at the age of 16 in 2015 and has played 29 times for the Chipolopolo. The 2017 CAF Young Player of the Year has been a revelation in England but will be missed as his country came third in Group B behind Equatorial Guinea and eventual winner, Tunisia.  

Jordan Zemura (Zimbabwe)

The Bournemouth left back debuted for the Zimbabwe national team in a 3-1 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification loss to Algeria on 13 November 2020. He is one of two biggest players in the Zimbabwe team and the opportunity to showcase his immense talent to the world went up the skies when his side failed to win a single game in Group G. 

Sebastien Haller (Ivory Coast)

The Ajax forward has been in scintillating form for his club but was less impressive for Ivory Coast. Haller played for France at all the junior levels but debuted for the Elephants in 2020 and has 6 caps to his name.     

Marvelous Nakamba (Zimbabwe)

The Aston Villa midfielder is the other biggest player in Zimbabwe alongside Jordan. His creativity in the middle of the park couldn’t bail his country out when needed the most.   

Eric Baily (Ivory Coast)

The Manchester United defender has had a torrid time in England due to injuries. He made his international debut in 2015 in a friendly against Nigeria and won the Nation’s Cuo for Ivory Coast the same year.   

Geoffrey Kondogbia (CAR)

The widely travelled Atlético Madrid and Central African Republic midfielder may have been a world champion with France, a country he once played for. All the games he played for France at senior level were not in competitive matches, Kondogbia was never cap-tied and was thus still eligible to represent the Central African Republic. He wasn’t able to influence proceedings in Group C.

Serge Aurier (Ivory Coast)

Just like Boly, the 29 year old Villareal defender won’t play in the World Cup. The former Tottenham and PSG star failed to live up to his billing during the qualifying series. 

Djene Dakonam (Togo)

The Getafe centre back who has 63 caps for the Togolese national team was unable to prevent his side from conceding goals as they lost 2 matches to take second place behind Senegal in Group H. He was once named in the UEFA la liga team in 2018/19 season and had interests from Barcelona and Real Madrid.  

Ihlas Bebou (Togo)

The Togolese forward will not have the chance to show the world his immense talents in Qatar following the non-qualification of his country for the World Cup. 

Willy Boly (Ivory Coast)

The former U16/17/19 France player has been phenomenal to the Ivory Coast national team but the ‘god of soccer’ has other plans for him and several of his national team mates as they lost by a lone goal to Cameroon in a make or mar encounter in Group D.  

Frank Kessie (Ivory Coast)

Another Ivory Coast star that will not be seen in Qatar is the AC Milan bullish midfielder who scored only one goal throughout the World Cup qualifying series. 

Amadou Diawara (Guinea)

The Roma star will not have a chance to show José Mourinho why he needs to start games. Diawara has been used sparingly and the World Cup could have been a perfect platform to re-launch his club career.

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