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U-23 AFCON: Black Meteors coach Ibrahim Tanko lifts lid on Ropapa Mensah's omission

By Vincent Ashitey
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Black Meteors coach Ibrahim Tanko has lifted the lid on why Ropapa Mensah has been left out of the Black Meteors squad.

Mensah was named in the 21-man squad for the U-23 AFCON which begins this week, however, Tanko has revealed that the Nashville SC striker has been replaced by Holland-based Abass Issah due to the unfortunate injury picked up by the former.

"We were expecting Ropapa to join the squad but we were advised by his club side that he had suffered an injury which would require that he sits out for some time before he can return to full action, thus we had to replace him in the squad," Tanko said after the team's first training session in Cairo.

"We are glad that Utrecht finally accepted to release Abass for the tournament."

This year's U-23 AFCON will be staged in Egypt and the tournament runs from 8-22 November. Ghana have been drawn in Group A with hosts Egypt, Mali and Cameroon.

READ ALSO:  U-23 AFCON: Believe in yourselves - Ghana's ambassador tells Black Meteors  

Ghana opens her campaign against Cameroon on Friday, November 8 at the Cairo International Stadium at 8:00 pm.

After, the Black Meteors will next take on Mali and host Egypt on November 11 and 14 respectively.

The top three finishers at the final tournament will qualify to represent Africa at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Ghana is seeking a return to the competition since its last appearance in 2004 in the Athens Olympic Games.

Below is Ghana 21-man squad


Kwame Baah (Asante Kotoko SC, Ghana)
Richmond Ayi (Hearts of Oak, Ghana)
Ibrahim Danlad (Asante Kotoko SC, Ghana)


Kingsley Fobi (CB Badajoz, Spain)
Edward Sarpong (Esperanca de Lagos, Spain)
Emmanuel Cudjoe (Attram De Visser, Ghana)
Fuseini Zackaria (Berekum Chelsea, Ghana)
William Dankyi (Hearts of Oak, Ghana)
Habib Mohammed (Asante Kotoko SC, Ghana)
Robin Polley (ADO Den Haag, Netherlands)

READ ALSO:  U-23 AFCON: South Africa arrive in Egypt with only 12 players 


Evans Osei Wusu (Tema Youth FC, Ghana)
Simon Zibo (Vitoria Guimaraes, Portugal)
Nurudeen Abdul-Aziz (Vision FC, Ghana)
Emmanuel Lomotey (Extremadura UD, Spain)
Yaw Yeboah (Celta Vigo B, Spain)
Evans Mensah (HJK Helsinki, Finland)
Michael Agbekpornu (Dreams FC, Ghana)


Frank Arhin (Dalkurd FF, Sweden)
Kwabena Owusu (Cordoba CF, Spain)
Issah Abass (Utrecht, Holland)

Samuel Obeng Gyabaa (Real Oviedo, Spain)