Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has turned down Qatari club Al Sadd’s request to replace their Ghanaian striker Agyemang Opoku for their AFC Champions League campaign. Al Sadd requested AFC’s permission to replace Opuku due to a “long-term injury”.
The AFC Champions League regulations make provisions for changes (three medically unfit players) to the original squad registered by the club up to seven days before the first group match day of the competition.
AFC stated in its letter to Al Sadd: “We are unable to approve the replacement of Mr Opoku Agyemang as the group stage has commenced” and the integrity of the competition regulations has to be maintained. However, Al Sadd were advised that the club could replace the 20-year-old player if they reach the knockout stage.
The speedy winger suffered a cruciate ligament injury during Al Sadd’s 3-0 defeat to Saudi champions Al Hilal last Wednesday and is expected to be on the sidelines for at least six months, ruling him out of the Black Stars’ FIFA World Cup campaign. Opoku has been a key player for the Qatari side since joining Al Sadd in 2008 from Tunisian outfit Club Sportif Sfaxien.
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