Leverkusen complain of mid-season loss of five players to AFCON finals in January

November 29 – Bayer Leverkusen president Fernando Carro says he wants a debate about holding the African Cup of Nations in the middle of the European season. 

Ivory Coast will organise the final phase from January 13 to February 11, meaning a spate of European-based African stars will have to be released by their clubs.

Leverkusen could be without five key players during the competition and are actually contemplating preventing them from participating.

“I will contact FIFA. It is unacceptable that the Africa Cup is being played in the middle of the season,” said Carro who is not the first to call for a change in the scheduling.

“We are checking whether there is a legal chance of not having to release the players,” Carro asserted. “It’s not realistic.”

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