Hodgson disappointed players have to travel to Africa

Hodgson disappointed players have to travel to Africa
Crystal Palace's Jordan Ayew (centre) in action

by Staff Reporter

Monday Nov 09, 2020. 09:00

African players are at a high risk of contracting the coronavirus during the international FIFA break according to Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson.

This comes after Palace duo of Jordan Ayew and Jeffrey Schlupp were included in the Ghana squad ahead of their 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers against Sudan.

Wilfried Zaha is part of the Ivory Coast squad which will face Madagascar, while Cheikhou Kouyate will captain Senegal against Guinea-Bissau.

Ayew contracted the coronavirus during the previous international FIFA break last month and Hodgson is a worried man.

“I am a little bit disappointed that players are going to go as far as Africa to play matches,” Hodgson told the club’s official website.

“I don’t know that in this Covid world and environment in which we live, it is really great news to be sending your players to places like Sudan and Mauritius.

“But it is something that we probably have to do, but I am just hoping this time the countries that they go and play for will look after them well because the last time we lost Jordan Ayew for two weeks.”

Ayew was part of the Ghana squad which faced Mali and Qatar in international friendly matches in Turkey last month.

“Unfortunately he [Ayew] tested positive for Covid in our last test on Friday,” Hodgson said last month on the Evening Standard.

“He’s been away with Ghana, which we weren’t exactly delighted to accept that he had to do. Like several other Ghanaian players, I believe when they have gone back to their clubs they have tested positive.

“Now we have to follow the relative government and Premier League guidelines before we see him again. I don’t know [when we’ll have him back]. Don’t ask me to stand here and explain all of the Premier League government guidelines when it comes to Covid.”

Palace will be back in action on November 21 when they face Burnley in an English Premier League match.

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