Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson has taken a dig at the Ghana FA, claiming reports that he ‘deceived’ the federation over Jeff Schlupp’s injury is ‘nonsense’.
Pearson took the Ghanaian authorities to cleaners and questioned the association over the standoff saying the Ghana FA should shoulder the blame for the situation.
GHANAsoccernet.com reported that coach Avram Grant and other officials are angry with Leicester City over ‘tricking’ them into believing the 22-year-old was injured after he played in the 1-0 defeat to Stoke City.
But the gaffer has staunchly denied claims the club withdrew Schlupp from the Africa Cup of Nations duty with Ghana, claiming the suggestions are nonsense.
“We said he would be out for 10 days to two weeks and that’s the case. I don’t see how it (him playing) is a surprise. I didn’t pull him out of anything,” Pearson told skysports
“He had scans here and was advised not to fly because of the swelling and then he went down to London to have an independent medical that was organised by the Ghanaian FA, and they came to the same conclusion as we did.
“They decided not to include him in their squad. If they’ve any problems then they need to look at their own administrators. It’s nothing to do with me.
“What the Ghanaian FA decide to do in terms of making statements, how their administrators operate or comments the managers want to make, is entirely up to them, but quite frankly I couldn’t care less about that.”
Jeff picked up a thigh injury following the FA Cup third round game against Newcastle United, and following scans he was ruled out for around ten days, which led to him being left out of Ghana’s 23 man squad after initially being in the provisional team.
But the Ghana FA have taken a new stance following the miraculous turn of event.
Nigel Pearson was reluctant to release the utility player to be examined by the Ghana doctors during their training camp in Spain and the Ghanaians were rushed into trying to find a third party doctor in the UK to examine Schlupp which resulted in his exclusion.
The claim by Leicester City that Schlupp that the player won’t be fit was the key reason why Ghana excluded the player from its final 23-man squad yet the English side played him in a dramatic turn of events signifying a quicker-than-expected return from injury arousing suspicions.
Black Stars coach Avram Grant is said to be considering reporting the Foxes to FIFA for tricking them into believing that the flanker might not be fit for the tournament yet he played a match for Leicester before Ghana took to the field at the AFCON.
According to Leicester City, Schlupp picked up a knee injury towards the end of the draw at Liverpool on New Year’s Day even though he was not substituted in the match which led to suspicions about the motives of the English side with many believing they were not keen on releasing their key player for Ghana.
According to scans conducted by Leicester City, the player’s joint was inflamed and he had strained ligaments, which led to the English side’s refusal to release Schlupp to meet up with Ghana medical officials for independent examination.
Leicester claim they supplied the results of a scan and their own report, while Schlupp underwent an independent examination in London for the Ghana Federation even though the player did not turn up in the Black Stars camp in Spain to be examined by the Ghana doctors.
Ghana federation are not taking the report lightly and as they suspect foul play as they were rushed into taking a third party with the club’s refusal to release the player to the Ghana camp for a proper independent examination.
European clubs are reluctant on releasing their players to play in the Africa Cup of Nations with Senegal recently battling some English clubs over the release of some of their players.
Ghana were caught in a similar battle with Chelsea over Michael Essien who was excluded from Black Stars squad at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations yet he played for the Blues just when the tournament started in Egypt.