Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang can not play in Gabon’s Africa Cup of Nations clash against Ghana due to ‘heart lesions’ following a bout with Covid-19.
The Arsenal forward tested positive for the virus shortly after arriving in Cameroon for the tournament.
He had recently returned to training and was expected to feature against Ghana on Friday after missing Gabon’s opening match against Comoros.
Extensive examinations were carried out by the Confederation of African Football (CAF), with Aubameyang’s team-mates Axel Meye and Mario Lemina forced to miss the match for the same reason.
A statement from the Gabon Football Federation said: “According to the CAF medical commission, the players Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Axel Meye and Mario Lemina barely out of the Covid cannot take part in this match. The examinations would show heart problems. CAF did not want to take any risks.”
Arsenal have been in contact with the player and are ‘confident’ that his condition is ‘not serious’, as per The Athletic.
— gunnerblog (@gunnerblog) January 14, 2022
Aubameyang’s national team woes add to a difficult period in the player’s career.
The 32-year-old was stripped of the Arsenal captaincy last month following a disciplinary breach and has not featured for the Premier League side since.
His last appearance for the Gunners came in the 2-1 defeat to Everton at Goodison Park on December 6.
Aubameyang has been linked with a move in the January transfer window, with Juventus and Newcastle reportedly interested in the Gabon skipper.
Meanwhile, Arsenal have made a request to the Premier League for the postponement of Sunday’s north London derby against Tottenham.
The Gunners are set to make the short journey to take on their neighbours but have a host of players missing due to Covid, injury, suspension and AFCON.
A club statement read: “We can confirm we have made an application to the Premier League for the postponement of Sunday’s north London derby against Tottenham Hotspur.
“We have reluctantly taken this step but we have many players currently unavailable across our squad as a result of Covid, injuries and players away with their countries at AFCON.
“We will provide more information as soon as it’s available.”