Abdoulaye Doucoure enjoyed a magnificent end to the Premier League season with Everton, but a return to Mali looks unlikely. For the time being, the midfielder (2 caps) seems to have already turned the page on the Eagles.
Fourteen months after his first cap in the Qatar 2022 World Cup play-offs between Mali and Tunisia (0-1 in Bamako and 0-0 in Tunis), Abdoulaye Doucoure has not played for his homeland. With just a few days to go before the publication of the Mali Eagles' list for the 5th day of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Congo on 18 June, a further absence of the Everton midfielder cannot be ruled out. After a magnificent end to the Premier League season with the Toffees, Doucoure seems to have turned the page on the Malian national team.
A bad experience with the Eagles
According to Sport New Africa, Abdoulaye Doucoure is no longer in contact with the technical staff. "He is not responding to calls and messages", we learn. The reasons for this refusal are not yet known. "Given what he (Doucoure) went through during the play-off rally. He's just arrived from Everton where he's in a frame of mind. He must have taken a beating because of everything that happened at the meeting. That's why he prefers to keep his distance," says one of those close to him. "The conditions don't suit him", confirms another.
These unsuitable conditions for Abdoulaye Doucoure can therefore be explained by the organisational problems at the players' training camp in preparation for the Qatar World Cup play-off. Especially at Kabala (the training and accommodation centre for national teams). The Eagles have not been back there since, as Kabala was closed and is now being renovated.
Health reasons and choice cited by the coach
After his first call-up with the Eagles, Abdoulaye Doucoure was not selected by Eric Sékou Chelle for the first day of the 2023 CAF Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers. The Malian coach, who was appointed as the new coach following the departure of Mohamed Magassouba, justified the Everton midfielder's absence on the grounds that he was not at 100%: "Abdoulaye Doucouré has been playing for 3 months on injections with his team, who were trying to stay up. They forced him to play on cortisone with infiltration and now I don't want to take any risks. He's not 100%," explained Eric Chelle.
At the Eagles' last qualifier for matchdays 3 and 4, Mali's coach cited a choice among the plethora of Malian players in midfield to explain the absence of Doucoure, who had already started to preform with the Toffees after Frank Lampard's dismissal.
While Mali's national coach is due to announce his list in a few days' time, Abdoulaye Doucoure does not seem to be going back on his decision. Is this the end of Doucoure's premature adventure with Mali? We wait and see...