SEPTEMBER 9, 2014 By Mohamed Fajah Barrie in Kinshasa
Leone Stars skipper Umaru’ Zaingalay’ Bangura has been ruled out of 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against DR Congo in Lubumbashi scheduled for Wednesday due to a groin injury.
The Belarus based defender told the Sports Writers Association of Sierra Leone (SWASAL) that he sustained the injury during a Leone Stars training session in Abidjan in preparation for their opening Group D qualifier against Les Elephants of Ivory Coast which the Leone Stars lost 2-1.
He said: “We trained on an artificial turf and I got injured because it was too hard for me. I just managed to play against Ivory Coast and it was not easy for me as I was feeling pain. I wasn’t even running properly.”
“Now I can’t even run, so I don’t think I’ll be fit for the game against DR Congo, unless a miracle happens.”
Leone Stars coach Jonathan McKinstry is yet to give up on his captain as he said: “My new physio Matthew Hylla will assess Bangura’s injury. If he’s fit he’ll play and if he doesn’t he’ll not play. It’ll be a big blow for us if Bangura doesn’t play but we have other players to fill the gap.”
It’ll be the second competitive game the is missing out since he made his debut for Leone Stars against Mali in 2006 in the 2008 African Cup of Nations qualifiers.
Two other players, Alfred ‘Zagalo’ Sankoh and George ‘Kweku’ Davies were substituted against Ivory Coast because of injury.
Sankoh, who is suffering from a groin injury, is also a doubt while Davies is expected to recover from a knee injury in time for the match.
Sankoh says it’s not looking good for him at the moment but he has not totally ruled himself out for now.
Coach McKinstry said Sankoh would also be assessed and a decision on him will be taken. He added: “I’m confident that Davies will be fit for the DR Congo match and he’ll play.”