Maxwel Cornet boost for Burnley, with top scorer's departure for AFCON delayed

Burnley’s Maxwel Cornet has been named in Ivory Coast’s squad for the African Cup of Nations in Cameroon, as expected.

By Chris Boden
Monday, 27th December 2021, 9:38 am
Maxwel Cornet
Maxwel Cornet

But, while players were initially due to report for duty after Boxing Day’s round of fixtures, European clubs have been permitted to to delay the release of players until the week the tournament begins on January 9th, after a request was accepted by the Confederation of African Football.

That means Cornet is available for Thursday night’s game at Manchester United, if fit, and can also feature at Elland Road against Leeds on Sunday.

Cornet, who missed Burnley’s last game against West Ham with a thigh problem, which would have kept him out of the matches against Watford and Aston Villa, was rated as a “maybe” for Boxing Day’s postponed game against Everton, and could miss a maximum of five games – including the FA Cup third round tie at home to Huddersfield Town, and any potential fourth round game if the Clarets advance – Leicester (January 15th) and Manchester United (February 8th) at home, and Arsenal (January 22nd) away.

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Ivory Coast are in Group E with Equatorial Guinea (January 12th), Sierra Leone (January 16th), Algeria (January 20th), are are expected to progress, with the top two teams of each group, along with the four best third-placed teams, advancing to the round of 16.

Clarets boss Sean Dyche said of Cornet’s impact last week: “The running side of it, the physical side, the robustness, I think he’s adapted well to it.

“He continues to do so.

“His language is getting better, which is important, and he seems to be quite settled.

“He’s just had a couple of awkward injuries that have slowed his progress, but when he’s played, he’s been effective, and he’s enjoying it.”