Gabon hopes to be able to field Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on Tuesday when they play their last group game at the Africa Cup of Nations, despite their captain’s exclusion from Friday’s 1-1 draw against Ghana in Yaoundé and the subsequent diagnosis of cardiac lesions after a post-Covid medical examination.
Aubameyang missed Gabon’s opening game win against Comoros on Monday after testing positive for Covid-19 on arrival in Cameroon for the tournament and being placed in quarantine along with his teammate Mario Lemina.
Both rejoined the squad after almost a week isolating, and trained on the eve of their second Group C encounter against Ghana. But the Confederation of African Football (Caf) ordered Gabon not to use them in that match after cardiac lesions were detected in a medical check.
“They passed the PCR tests, which were negative, and then they did the second battery of medical tests and it seems that both of them have a problem,” explained the Gabon coach, Patrice Neveu.
“I was on the phone with the team doctor and Caf and they told me not to play them, because their health must take precedence. The virus has left some residue on the MRI tests that they underwent. Aubameyang and Lemina don’t have heart problems, but Covid may have left some waste, so it was wise not to play and we followed the protocols.”