YAOUNDE, Cameroon (AP) — Watch this space.
The Comoros football team have given one of their outfield players a crash course to keep their goal at the Africa Cup of Nations after injuries and positive coronavirus tests left him without a goalkeeper goal for the biggest game in its history.
The situation is so sensitive – and unprecedented – that the Comoros have yet to identify the player chosen to try to prevent top scorer Cameroon in their round of 16 match on Monday at the most prestigious tournament in the world. ‘Africa.
On the good side of Comoros, the chosen player has shown some potential in this position.
“We have already chosen an outfield player who will start as a goalkeeper,” said Comoros assistant coach Daniel Padovanni. “He’s a player who in training has shown he can play as a ‘keeper’.”
1 goalkeeper Salim Ben Boina is injured and the two Comoros reserve keepers are among 12 players and coaching staff who have tested positive for the virus.
Comoros are playing their first major tournament and the tiny island nation in the Indian Ocean shocked everyone by advancing to the knockout stage on their debut. He beat four-time champions Ghana, on his way to becoming one of the stories of the African football championship.
But he now faces a huge challenge against Cameroon, who have scored seven goals against regular goalkeepers in their three group games, more than anyone.
Comoros are in a tricky position due to rules issued by the African Football Confederation ahead of the start of the tournament to ensure the schedule is not marred by virus outbreaks in squads.
Almost all Cameroon teams had positive cases during the tournament.
In the rules, teams must play a match if they have a minimum of 11 fit and healthy players, even if there are no goalkeepers available. Another player must complete.
Comoros coach Amir Abdou was among those who tested positive, meaning the team are also expected to be on the sidelines without him against Cameroon.
It will be the first time that an outfield player will start as a goalkeeper in a major international tournament. Players previously had to replace the goalkeeper in matches, including once already in this tournament.
Ivory Coast defender and captain Serge Aurier briefly had to don a goalkeeper shirt and gloves towards the end of a group game against Sierra Leone after goalkeeper Badra Ali Sangaré was injured and Ivory Coast has used all his replacements.
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