Senegal accuses Watford of having “blocked” Ismaïla Sarr from the Africa Cup of Nations | Watford
Ismaila Sarr is unfit to represent Senegal at the Africa Cup of Nations, her club Watford said on Sunday after being accused of preventing the player from making it to this month’s tournament in Cameroon .
Senegal have said Watford provided “false” reasons for denying Sarr permission to travel, but the Premier League club have urged the Senegalese to send their own doctor to assess the injury.
“Ismaila Sarr suffered a knee ligament injury on 20 November in the match against Manchester United and has not been fit to play for Watford since,” the club said.
“In early December, the club wrote to the Senegalese Football Federation describing the clinical diagnosis of Ismaila’s injury and immediately followed up by providing MRI scans detailing the extent of the injury. After further consultation with medical experts, we informed the federation of Ismaïla’s rehabilitation process and the probable recovery schedule.
“Over the past 10 days, the club has reiterated to the Senegalese Football Federation the player’s current state of health and his recovery schedule,” the statement continued. “The Hornets have also called on the Senegalese Football Federation to ask their own independent surgeon to confirm the diagnosis and the period of rehabilitation.”
Earlier, Senegal said they would seek intervention from Fifa and demanded the release of the winger to join the rest of the squad preparing for Dakar.
“The English club Watford has notified on the basis of spurious arguments its decision to block the player, who has expressed his desire to join the Senegalese selection for the Nations Cup,” said a statement signed by the secretary general of the Federation Senegalese footballer, Victor Seh. Cisse.
“The FSF responded immediately to confirm the player’s summons and the club’s obligation to release the player by January 3 at the latest. The FSF would like to express its deep condemnation of the disrespectful, pernicious and discriminatory behavior of Watford who seeks by all means to prevent a player from playing with his national team.
“Africa, its football and its footballers deserve the same respect as that accorded to other continents, confederations and players. The FSF will take all the necessary measures to guarantee respect for the fundamental right of its footballers to play for their country, ”he added.
Watford has previously refused to allow Nigerian striker Emmanuel Dennis to join his country, saying the Nigerian Football Association did not call him in time, missing the deadline to inform the club of his selection.
Nigeria did not contest the request and have since replaced Dennis in their squad.
Watford, who lost in stoppage time to Tottenham on Saturday to move closer to the relegation zone, will lose three other players in the tournament – Nigerian William Troost-Ekong and Moroccan pair Imran Louza and Adam Masina.