Timbe's knee injury to lock him out of Kenya team to Africa Cup of Nations

Source: Xinhua| 2019-05-13 23:16:03|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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NAIROBI, May 13 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Super League side Beijing Renhe striker Ayub Timbe is likely to miss making Kenya's national team squad having not played a single match since December 2018 over injury concerns.

Timbe, went under the knife with a knee surgery in January while playing in the Chinese Super League in December 2018 for his club Beijing Renhe.

He was operated on Jan. 3, to correct the damage. The 26-year-old is yet to play any competitive match and is set to miss out as head coach Sebastien Migne says merit and discipline will be the yardstick in naming his provisional squad for the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) team.

Migne will name 26-man squad that will travel to Kenya's training camp in Paris, for three weeks. Three players will be dropped before the team flies to Egypt. The AFCON will start in Egypt from 21 June to 19 July.

Two teams from each group will go into the last 16, with the four best third-placed teams also progressing.

The last eight will be eliminated. Kenya will be taking part in the tournament for the first time in 15 years.

Football Kenya Federation (KFK) President Nick Mwendwa says the team is scheduled to jet out to Paris, on May 31 and has already been booked at the French Rugby Federation where they will hold a 19-day residential camp before flying out to Cairo Egypt.

"Football Kenya Federation has also secured two friendly matches in France, against Madagascar on June 7, and the Gambia a week later, on June 15," said Mwendwa on Monday in Nairobi.

Kenya will play in Group C. The first match will see Stars face Algeria on June 23. Tanzania will be up next on June 27, before Harambee Stars wind it up with a match against Senegal on July 1.

A total of 24 teams qualified for the final tournament. Cameroon are the defending champions, beating Egypt in the 2017 final.

Kenya will also be naming its team to compete in the Africa Nations Championships qualifier against Burundi, set to be played in August.

The winners of the tie on aggregate will face off with either Tanzania or Sudan in the second and final qualifying round of the tournament, set to be held in Ethiopia in January 2020.

Kenya will be looking to make a maiden appearance at the 16-team tourney reserved exclusively for players actively featuring in their respective national championships.