The hero of the Ivory Coast in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), Sebastien Haller (29), will miss the team’s next two matches this month due to injury, confirmed coach Emerse Fae this Monday, while naming his squad for the friendly matches against Benin and Uruguay.

Haller, who revived his career at Borussia Dortmund after testicular cancer, scored the winning goal for Ivory Coast against Nigeria, managed by José Peseiro, with a 2-1 scoreline in the AFCON final last month in Abidjan.

The player did not participate in the group stage of the tournament in Ivory Coast due to an ankle injury, but he recovered and scored two decisive goals, including the winner in the final, thus delivering the title to the hosts in a fairy tale ending.

But now, the forward is again sidelined with a similar injury and will miss the first two matches of Ivory Coast after winning the AFCON.

The Ivory Coast national team will face Benin in Amiens on March 23, and Uruguay at the Bollaert-Delelis Stadium in Lens three days later.

Captain Serge Aurier, who moved from Nottingham Forest to Galatasaray in January but has not yet played for his new club due to injury, and forward Christian Kouame from Fiorentina, who contracted malaria and is still recovering, are also not part of the squad.

Fae has called up only one new face to the team, right-back Guela Doue from Stade Rennais in Ligue 1. Ousmane Diomande, a central defender from Sporting, retains the coach’s trust.

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