We had to admit, we couldn’t understand why Leon Balogun was pencilled in for a place at the AFCON when he was clearly injured.
Evidently Nigeria gave him till the last second to prove his fitness but the ex-Bremen man was unable, and he tragically misses out on a certain place and first XI starting berth.
Make no mistake, while the AFCON doesn’t carry the esteem of the Euros, this was a moment of huge pride to the African players called up, and to lose out would be devastating.
And with Balogun long-term injured with recurring niggles that don’t quite seem to go away, it made no sense that he was to go to Cameroon.
But the BBC outdid themselves reporting on it – claiming he’d been dropped.
They changed it a while later after everyone else confirmed he’d had to withdraw.
Nevertheless for Balogun it’s a terrible start to his new year – he’d have looked forward to a real chance at winning this thing with his country, but he misses out, and there’s no ETA on his return.
He’s starting to feel a lot like Ryan Jack, unfortunately.