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Algeria's Taider out, Bennacer gets Cup call

12 January 2017, 18:12

Algiers - Algerian midfielder Saphir Tader has been ruled out of the Africa Cup of Nations with a recurring knee injury and will be replaced by Ismail Bennacer.

The Algerian Football Federation (FAF) said 19-year-old Arsenal midfielder Bennacer will arrive in Algiers on Thursday before flying to Gabon for their tournament opener on Sunday against Zimbabwe.

Tader aggravated a previous injury during training with defender Ramy Bensebaini also nursing a niggling knee problem.

Also read: Egypt look to rekindle glory days

"It's a real pity for Taider, it happened at the last minute. He was a key element for me, a player who had experience in the Cup of Nations and World Cup," said Algeria coach George Leekens.

"I hope that Ismael Bennacer will be up to the task. He will learn a lot in this CAN.

Algeria are drawn in Group B with Tunisia, Senegal and Zimbabwe, with the top two advancing to the quarter-finals.

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- AFP

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