New Telegraph

February 25, 2024

Morocco omits Chelsea star from AFCON squad

Chelsea will not lose Hakim Ziyech to the Africa Cup of Nations in early 2022 as an ongoing feud between player and international coach has led to the winger being left out of Morocco’s squad. The Blues have found themselves short on numbers at times during recent COVID-19 outbreaks and faced being left further shorthanded next month. Thomas Tuchel’s side are chasing down honours on multiple fronts, and have been boosted by the news Ziyech will be available. The 28-year-old forward has 40 caps and 17 goals for Morocco, but he has fallen out of favour under current head coach Vahid Halilhodzic. The Bosnian revealed in September, when first snubbing Ziyech, that his patience with the star had been pushed beyond breaking point. He told reporters: “For the first time in my coaching career, I saw a national team player who doesn’t want to train and claims to be injured, although tests have shown he can play.”

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