Manchester United are resigned to losing goalkeeper Andre Onana to Cameroon for the African Cup of Nations duty between January and February, according to ESPN.
The 27-year-old joined the Red Devils from Inter Milan during last summer’s transfer window and he has played every minute of the club’s campaign across all competitions.
Manager Erik ten Hag has refused to rotate his shot-stopper thus far but he could be forced to do so in the New Year due to Onana’s national team commitments.
The former Ajax man has yet to make a decision whether he will play if he is called up for AFCON.
Meanwhile, summer signing Altay Bayindir has impressed in training. The Turkish star could make his debut for the club during Onana’s absence in early 2024.
Onana could miss up to seven games due to AFCON duty
The Cameroon star retired from international duty after the World Cup in Qatar last year following a rift with head coach Rigobert Song during the group stage.
However, he accepted to make his comeback in September and played the entire 90 minutes of a must-win AFCON qualifier against Burundi in Garoua.
Onana has since played another 90 minutes in a friendly against Senegal and he is most likely to accept a call-up from the Indomitable Lions for the tournament.
In that case, Onana could miss four Premier League games if Cameroon make the final on February 11.
He could also miss the FA Cup third round tie on January 5/6/7 to join the preparation camp.
If United were to progress in the FA Cup, he could be absent for the fourth round in late January.
There is an outside chance that he could also miss a European tie in mid-February due to the excursions involved and the lack of training with the first-team squad.
United need to be well-prepared for the situation. Bayindir is a top-class shot-stopper and should have the chance to showcase his talents in the Red Devils shirt.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com
- Newcastle 1-0 Manchester United: Player ratings as awful displays from Rashford and Martial put pressure on Ten Hag
- Confirmed Man Utd line-up vs Newcastle, 4 changes
- ‘He has to play’: Erik ten Hag confirms Man Utd midfielder could leave in January
- Predicted Man Utd line-up vs Newcastle, Mainoo returns
- Serhou Guirassy flattered by Man Utd interest
- Erik ten Hag confirms Mason Mount will return to training today
- Stats show the real culprits in Manchester United’s dismal performances this season
- Man Utd very interested in signing Antonio Silva, attentive to his performances
- Man Utd showing interest in signing Serhou Guirassy
- Man Utd in very advanced talks to sign Genoa star Radu Dragusin