A major blow.
Comoros have been dealt a major blow ahead of their last-16 AFCON clash against Cameroon, with all three of their goalkeepers ruled out of action.
Between injuries and Covid-19 issues, the African minnows will be forced to take on the hosts, and dark horses for the competition with no recognised man between the sticks.
Under rules set out by CAF, should a team have more than 11 players available to play, the game will go ahead, regardless of the number of goalkeepers available to a squad.
Comoros set for major AFCON blow.
Ahead of Monday’s game, Comoros have been rocked by a number of Covid-19 cases within their camp.
Moyadh Ousseini and Ali Ahamada are both isolating having contracted Covid-19, while their Head Coach Amir Abdou has also tested positive for the virus in Cameroon.
Comoros’ third-choice keeper Salim Ben Boina is injured and is ruled out of action as a result for the rank outsiders.
So it’s really happening then. An outfield player will be in goal for Comoros tomorrow v Cameroon:
Comoros assistant boss Daniel Padovanni:
“We’ve already chosen an outfield player who will start as keeper…It’s a player who in training has shown that he can play as a keeper.”
— John Bennett (@JohnBennettBBC) January 23, 2022
In a statement issued by CAF, they set out the rules for the competition in relation to Covid-19 related postponements.
“A team will be required to play a match if they have a minimum of 11 players available who have tested negative,” it read.
“In the event of the absence of a goalkeeper, another player from the team must replace the goalkeeper, provided the total number of available players is at least eleven.”
While it now appears likely Comoros will succumb to a heavy last-16 defeat to Cameroon, they have enjoyed a remarkable AFCON campaign nonetheless.
The East African side qualified for the knockout phase of the competition thanks to an incredible win against Ghana in the group stages, having lost out by a goal in each of their first two group games.
Comoros have since confirmed that they will field an outfield player in between the sticks, ruling out the prospect of them forfeiting the game, for now at least.