Leone Stars caretaker coach John Jebbor Sherrington has selected just eight players who ply their trade outside Sierra Leone for the country’s first 2017 African Nations Cup outing in Khartoum, Sudan. (Photo: Assistant coach Charlie Wright with local players in training)
According to the former international and veteran technician, it is because of lack of finance from the Sierra Leone government.
Sherrington was quoted as saying, “We have only invited eight foreign-based players for the match because the SLFA is managing the little resources it has as the Sports ministry has stated that it’ll no longer fund national teams.”
Football Sierra Leone contacted the sports ministry and the SLFA’s media both was unavailable for any comment.
The Leone Stars will start their 2017 AFCON campaign against Sudan 13th or 14th June and there will be no room for error after failing to reach the tournament for 19 years counting.
Already four prominent names will be out due to injuries and suspension, Orebro striker Alhassan Kamara and France-based stopper Solomon Zombo Morris, Turkish midfielder Khalifa Jabbie.
“I’m not sure if I can make the trip as I am still recovering from my left shoulder injury, I also missed nearly the half of my team’s matches in the just concluded season,” Turkey-based international Khalifa Jabbie told footballsierraleone.net
Al Hilal defender David Simbo will not available due to suspension. Simbo, 25, was red carded in Leone Stars’ last match in DR Congo in their 2015 African Nations Cup qualifier.
Football Sierra Leone understands there will be three home-based goalkeepers in the squad named by Sherrington most notable the U-23 pair.
Possible names of invited foreign players as we await the final list: Captain Umaru Bangura Dinamo Minsk, John Kamara PAS Lamia Greece, Mohamed Bangura AIK Sweden, Kei Kamara Columbus Crew, Mohamed Medo Kamara Bolton, and Rodney Strasser Genoa Italy.
By Alie Bittar