Aston Villa may have been dealt the first blow of the increased involvement of their players on African national team international duty, as it’s reported that Villa’s Senegalese international midfielder Idrissa Gana Gueye missed the side’s final training session after suffering an injury on the eve of their international friendly match against South Africa.
AfricanFoootball.com reports that Gueye picked up a hamstring injury and that the 25-year-old will go for a scan at a South African hospital on Tuesday morning to determine the extent of the injury.
At the moment it doesn’t seem too serious judging from the report that pointed out that Gueye is ‘walking normally’, but the knock-on effects to Villa’s campaign will be known shortly once the Senegal team doctor gets confirmation on the degree of the Villa midfield dynamo’s injury.
With a series of Midland derbies this month against Leicester City, WBA and Birmingham, due to his battling style, Gueye is one of the Villa players you really don’t want missing from the ranks for such battles ahead.
The Gueye injury may give Villa a first taste of the downside of their trio of players – including also Jordan Ayew (Ghana) and Rudy Gestede (Benin) – being African internationals, for they could be missing from Villa’s squad in the early part of 2017 due to the African Nations Cup. They would be unavailable for several of Aston Villa games (in January) depending on their respective national team’s success.
In recent seasons the African Nations Cup has had little impact on Villa and held little interest for Villans, but after this summer transfer window that is about to change with the tournament hosted by Gabon in 2017.
Both Gueye’s Senegal and Ayew’s Ghana, after winning their opening two games, sit top of their respective qualifying groups, while Benin face a tougher qualifying route after beginning their campaign with two draws (although Gestede hasn’t featured).
Still, the African Nations Cup is very much next season’s news, but in the short-term hopefully Gueye’s knock isn’t anything too serious.