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Africa Cup of Nations

Brian Mandela joins Harambee Stars in Egypt after knee surgery

14:00 GMT+3 21/06/2019
Afcon: Blow for Harambee Stars as defender Brian Mandela is ruled out
Mandela's injury will force coach Sebastien Migne to use a new defensive partnership as he readies Kenya for Afcon duties

Harambee Stars defender Brian Mandela has joined his international teammates in Egypt.

Mandela, who underwent surgery on his right knee in France on Wednesday, jetted to Cairo where he is set to remain in camp, as Kenya take part in the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon).

The Maritzburg United centre-back suffered a Meniscus tear during Harambee Stars 19-day training camp in France and was subsequently ruled out of the 32nd Afcon edition.

“It has been hard to accept (the injury), especially because of its timing, but the support I have received from my teammates in the past few days has made it easier for me. Football Kenya Federation has also made sure that my surgery was successful," Mandela told the FKF website upon arrival from France.

"The (Harambee Stars) medical team has also been supportive.”

Mandela hopes Kenya will impress in Egypt as the Migne's team seek to make a maiden appearance in the competition's knockout phase.

“I may not be in a position to help the team on the pitch, but I am happy to be here to offer my support to the team, and hopefully they will do us proud,” he added.

Harambee Stars will face Algeria in the opening tie of Group C on June 23. Then there are clashes against Tanzania and Senegal at the 30 June Stadium in Egypt's capital city.

Migne is still waiting to see whether defender Musa Mohamed will be fit to face the Desert Foxes. Mandela and Mohamed had established themselves as the Frenchman's preferred centre-backs during the qualifying journey.