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Seven Stars Set To Miss AFCON Qualifiers Due To Injury

With the initial round of qualification fixtures looming for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast, here are some African stars who are set to miss their country's games in June due to injury.

Click through the gallery above to see some African stars set to miss the first round of qualification matches for AFCON 2023 due to injury!

Qualifiers for the continental showpiece begin on Wednesday, with three matches set to take place, one of which will be between four-time competition winners Ghana and Madagascar at the Cape Coast Stadium.

The Black Stars, who have not lifted the AFCON trophy in 40 years, will be looking to put that right in Ivory Coast next year, but will be without Arsenal midfielder Thomas Partey for the first round of qualifiers for the tournament.

Partey suffered a hamstring injury on 4 April during the Gunners' 3-0 loss to Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, and has not played since. As such, he will also be unavailable for the 2010 FIFA World Cup quarter-finalists' clash against Central African Republic.

It was the central midfielder's goal that essentially earned Ghana a place at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, when they drew 1-1 with Nigeria.

The Super Eagles, themselves, will also be without a star defensive midfielder as Wilfred Ndidi is still recovering from a knee injury he sustained in March.

The 25-year-old was substituted off in the 60th minute of Leicester City's UEFA Europa Conference League round of 16 second-leg encounter with Stade Rennais, and has not featured for the Foxes since.

With AFCON 2023 qualification all to play for, the three-time tournament winners will be hoping Ndidi's absence for the fixtures against Sierra Leone and Sao Tome e Principe will not prove costly, like it did when the former Genk man missed their final 2022 World Cup qualification match.

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Another African star plying his trade in the English top flight is Riyad Mahrez. Fresh from winning his third Premier League title with Manchester City, the Desert Foxes captain will not be available for their tussle at home to Uganda on 4 June and away in Tanzania four days later.

The medical staff at his club have reportedly issued a medical report to the Algerian FA stating the winger is not fit enough to feature for the AFCON 2019 champions, although his injury has not been specified.

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