Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Haller – This Shows Disrespect To Africa

AFC Ajax and Ivory Coast striker Sebastien Haller has hit out at the disrespect to the Africa Cup of Nations as he prepares to travel to Cameroon.

Haller, 27, has been in imperious form for Ajax since joining the club from West Ham United in January this year and currently leads the UEFA Champions League scoring charts with 10 goals in six games.

However, like many other African superstars, they will be missing for a crucial period for their European clubs which has caused widespread debate amongst the football fraternity.

There have been calls for the tournament to be postponed while several clubs have expressed they would like their players to reject call-ups for the biennial event that will take place next month.

However, Haller said posing the question to players isn’t right.

“This shows disrespect to Africa. Would this question be asked of a European player going to the European Championship? Of course, I will go to the tournament,” he said in an interview with De Telegraaf.

“This tournament was actually supposed to be held in the summer but was postponed due to corona. Of course, I will go to the Africa Cup to represent Ivory Coast. That is the highest honour.”

Haller admitted that it’s a thought predicament to be placed in as a professional footballer but has placed his commitment to the Elephants for the month.

“Of course, I would have liked to have taken the plane in between to be able to play against FC Utrecht and PSV, but that is simply impossible,” Haller added.

“This situation is very frustrating. I hate having to choose between my country and my club. That’s really shit. I play with Ajax for the title and those two matches are very important because they influence the league standings.”

Haller has scored 35 goals and registered 13 assists in 47 games for the Eredivisie giants since his €22m switch from the Hammers.

Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Köhler is an award-winning South African football journalist. Having cut his teeth in the industry working at Kick-Off Magazine, he is now iDiski Times' senior digital content writer. He specialises in breaking top African football stories and transfers with a major focus on the 'big-three' Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates and CAF inter-club and international competitions. In 2021 he was listed amongst the top-five journalists under 30 in Print Media for the AIPS Awards.