The Gambia has completed selecting a national team for next month’s Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon. The list was announced by Coach Tom Saintfiet yesterday. It contains 28 players, an addition of about 5 from previous tournaments meant to cater for any Covid-19 cases among players of the participating teams.

The coach who was working with a provisional 40- man squad has now made up his mind as to which scorpions would be on the plane to Douala on January 7.

 The list undoubtedly provoked debate among Gambian fans with some, again, questioning the absence of the likes of Alie Sowe, the fans favourite who has been repeatedly over-looked by the coach despite his good form and goal scoring acumen. In goal, the previous anxiety about the potential absence of the experienced Modou Jobe (Toldo) was laid to rest with his inclusion in the final list. Not faraway from the post the coach keeps faith with Pa Modou Jagne, Omar Colley and James Gomez among others as defenders while the redoubtable goal merchant Assan Ceesay ‘s place remained unshakable in attack.  So also is Steve Trawalley and Lamin Jalow and others. There are strong characters from centre of the midfield to the flanks with the likes of versatile winger Modou Barrow, Ebrima Darboe, Saul Marreh and Buba Jobe among others. However, concerns over the calling of some players the coach himself had ignored for a while or whose sell-by dates might have expired or put into question. ”What the coach is looking for is a team with inspirers, youthful exuberance and outright adventurers. With hard work and little luck the Scorpions can do better than expected of debutants,” a technician told The Standard yesterday.