Africa Cup of Nations: 11 stars eager to put themselves in the shop window
1. Franck Kessie (Ivory Coast)
His performances for Atalanta have captured the attention of Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United
Kessie is among the stars of the Serie A season so far, with his performances in the centre of Atalanta’s midfield capturing the attention of Premier League outfits including Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United according to reports.
Dynamic, powerful and technically gifted, the 20-year-old’s drive in the engine room will be vital if Ivory Coast are to succeed in this year’s competition without Yaya Toure.
2. Aymen Abdennour (Tunisia)
Chelsea, Everton and Marseille are among the sides supposedly considering a bid for his services
The Cup of Nations provides a welcome escape from Valencia’s horror show for Aymen Abdennour, who may be hoping that some strong displays in Gabon lead to a permanent departure from Mestalla.
Chelsea, Everton and Marseille are among the sides supposedly considering a bid for his services, with the central defender revealing last month that he held talks with unnamed English outfits in the summer.
3. Emmanuel Adebayor (Togo)
A free agent since leaving Crystal Palace, his determination to represent Togo in the Cup of Nations saw a move to Lyon collapse
A free agent since leaving Crystal Palace in the summer, Emmanuel Adebayor’s determination to represent Togo in the Cup of Nations contributed to the collapse of a Lyon move in September. The former Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester City striker was a major disappointment at Selhurst Park and will be keen to show prospective buyers that he still has plenty left to give even as his 33rd birthday approaches.
4. Bertrand Traore (Burkina Faso)
On loan at Ajax until the end of the season, Traore will also be out to convince the Chelsea hierarchy that his long-term future lies at Stamford Bridge
Burkina Faso exceeded expectations by reaching the final of this competition four years ago, when they were narrowly beaten by Nigeria in Johannesburg. The Stallions will probably be quietly confident again after being drawn in a favourable group, particularly as the bulk of the 2013 squad remains intact.
Chelsea’s Bertrand Traore is one of the newcomers – although he made his international debut at the age of 15, the forward was not included in the travelling party to South Africa – and will be looking to add to the three goals he’s scored for his country since 2011. On loan at Ajax until the end of the season, Traore will also be out to convince the Chelsea hierarchy that his long-term future lies at Stamford Bridge.