By Mark Gleeson
Emmanuel Adebayor’s international career will extend into yet another season after he was named by Togo in their preliminary squad for next month’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Benin.
Since taking over as Togo coach in 2016, Claude Le Roy has consistently made his early selections public and includes Adebayor in his team, 18 years since the striker made his Togo debut.
Adebayor, who first played for Togo in July 2000, is one of 34 players named for the match in Lome on 9 September.
The 34-year-old, who plays for İstanbul Basaksehir in Turkey, has previously had a tempestuous relationship with his country but since Le Roy took over as coach, has been a regular.
A total of 15 new players were named by the veteran coach, including Ghana-born Samuel Asamoah, who plays in the top flight in Belgium with St Truiden.
The 24-year-old was born in Accra to a Togolese mother and last year expressed an interest in playing for ‘Les Eperviers’.
Other new inclusions are 19-year-old goalkeeper Malcolm Barcola, who is at the academy of Olympique Lyonnais, Cameroon-based defender James Olufade and Kevin Denkey, a 17-year-old striker from the academy of Nimes, who have just been promoted up to Ligue 1.
Togo opened their Nations Cup Group D campaign in June last year with a narrow defeat away in Algeria while Benin won 1-0 at home against the Gambia.
Goalkeepers: Yorgan Edem (SD Ponferradina, Spain), Sabirou Bassa Djeri (Coton Sport, Cameroon), Malcolm Barcola (Olympique Lyonnais, France), Yovo Bedi (Gomido FC), Fadil Soumanou (Koroki)
Defenders: Issifou Bourahana, Ablanvi Djadja (AS Togo Port), Dakonam Djene (Getafe, Spain), Simon Gbegnon (AS Beziers, France), Maklibé Kouloum (Dyto Lome), Tevi Steve Lawson (unattached), James Olufade (Union Douala, Cameroon), Hakim Ouro Sama (Lille, France), Messan Toudji (Anges FC)
Midfielders: Bilali Akoro (AS OTR), Lalawele Atakora (FK Qabala, Azerbaijan), Samuel Asamoah (St Truiden, Belgium), Koffi Franco Atchou (Fremad Amager, Denmark), Floyd Ayite (Fulham, England), Ihlas Bebou (Hannover 96, Germany), Marco Bocco (Agaza Lome), Razak Boukari (Chateauroux, France), Matthieu Dossevi (Toulouse, France), Amevi Gadjabo (Espoir), Elom Nya Vedji (Planete Foot), Thomas Wogodo (Futur Stars)
Forwards: Emmanuel Adebayor (İstanbul Basaksehir, Turkey), Kevin Denkey (Nimes, France), Abel Hunlede Kissimbo (AS Togo Port), Thibault Klidje (Espoir), Kossi Koudagba (ASCK), Kodjo Fo-Doh Laba (Renaissance Berkane, Morocco), Peniel Mlapa (VVV Venlo, Netherlands), Koidj Sewonou (AS Togo Port). BBC.